Monday, April 23, 2012

Bollywood actor Meenakshi Thapar allegedly killed by fellow performers

Amit-Jaiswal-and-Preeti-S-008 A Bollywood ingenue was allegedly kidnapped and murdered by two fellow aspiring actors who had hoped to extract £18,000 from her family, India Today reports.

Amit Jaiswal, 36, and his lover Preeti Surin allegedly strangled and later beheaded Meenakshi Thapar, who appeared in the Indian horror film 404 last year and completed work on the film Heroine last month. It is suggested that her alleged killers, who also had small parts in the latter movie, overheard their victim boasting of her Nepalese family's wealth and invited her on a trip to Gorakhpur, a small town close to India's border with Nepal known for its Buddhist temples. There they allegedly took her hostage and demanded the 1,500,000 rupee (£18,000) sum from her parents, according to local police.

After being warned that her daughter would be forced to take part in pornography films if the ransom were not paid, Thapar's mother paid 60,000 rupees (£730) into her daughter's account for the kidnappers to withdraw. However, she was killed soon afterwards for reasons that have not been substantiated. The victim's brother registered a missing persons complaint on 17 March.

Jaiswal and Surin, who had moved to India's film city Mumbai from Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh in the hope of getting acting work after their affair was discovered by the former's wife, were arrested when police found them to be in possession of Thapar's mobile phone sim card. They later confessed to strangling Thapar and throwing her decapitated head in a bag from a bus window on the road back to Mumbai. The actor's body was cut up and dumped in a water tank.

"They returned to Mumbai from Allahabad by bus," a police officer investigating the case told India Today. "The idea to sever the head and carry it along was that they did not want anyone to identify her body. They thought if they disposed of the bag and her hacked head in a different spot en route to Mumbai, they would be destroying the trace of the murder."

While the killers have confessed, police are still trying to discover the exact spot where they disposed of the head and have not yet recovered Thapar's body. "So far, both of them maintain they do not remember the spot. However, we are trying to get details of which buses they took to reach Mumbai from Allahabad," said an officer.

The Guardian

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