Ghaziabad couple jumps from 8th floor flat after strangling 2 children, rabbit

A 45-year-old man, his 43-year-old wife and their 25-year-old business associate allegedly jumped to deaths from the balcony of an eighth-floor flat in Ghaziabad, near New Delhi, after allegedly murdering the couple’s two children on Tuesday, police said.

Ghaziabad couple jumps from 8th floor flat after strangling 2 children, rabbit

The couple, who had recently suffered heavy losses in their business, strangled their 17-year-old daughter Ritika and slit the throat of their 13-year-old son Hritik before killing themselves, the police said. The family’s pet rabbit was also found dead in the same room as the children.

Ghaziabad couple jumps from 8th floor flat after strangling 2 children, rabbit
Police seen during the investigation, at Krishna Apra Sapphire residential society, Indirapuram, in Ghaziabad on Tuesday. (Photo by Sakib Ali /Hindustan Times)
         

A 45-year-old man, his 43-year-old wife and their 25-year-old business associate allegedly jumped to deaths from the balcony of an eighth-floor flat in Ghaziabad, near New Delhi, after allegedly murdering the couple’s two children on Tuesday, police said.

The couple, who had recently suffered heavy losses in their business, strangled their 17-year-old daughter Ritika and slit the throat of their 13-year-old son Hritik before killing themselves, the police said. The family’s pet rabbit was also found dead in the same room as the children.

Gulshan Vasudeva, originally from Jhilmil Colony in east Delhi, and his wife Parveen used to run a garments business and children’s clothes store in east Delhi’s Gandhi Nagar, but they had suffered severe losses recently, which investigators said may have compelled the murders and suicides.

The business associate was identified by the police as 25-year-old Sanjana, who, investigators said, worked as a manager for Vasudeva and had been staying with the couple in their rented flat in Indirapuram for the past four years.

“Around 3.38am, Vasudeva made a video call to a friend, Ramesh Kumar Arora, and showed him his two dead children and said that ‘everything was finished’. Around 5am, residents in their building called the police when guards heard the three bodies falling from the balcony,” said Sudhir Kumar Singh, senior superintendent of police (SSP), Ghaziabad.

Assistant superintendent of police (Ghazaibad) Keshav Kumar said that Arora then tried to contact Vasudeva again, but when he could not get through he called Vasudeva’s relatives in an attempt to get them to visit the house. Arora, however, did not immediately inform the police, Kumar said.

“While the couple died on the spot, Sanjana was alive after the fall and was rushed to a hospital. She could only tell us that they committed suicide before she also died,” SSP Singh added.

Before jumping from the eighth-floor apartment, the three had scribbled what appeared to be a suicide note in Hindi on a wall of the room where two children were found murdered. Investigators added that a bundle of ?500 notes and a bounced cheque were also pasted to the wall.

“This money is for our last rites… The five of us have a final wish that our bodies should be cremated together. The person responsible for our death is … Rakesh Verma,” the note on the wall read, according to the police.

“Rakesh Verma has been identified as Gulshan’s brother-in-law. We also found that Gulshan had lodged a case against Verma in 2015 when he failed to pay alleged dues around ?2 crore. On Verma’s insistence, Gulshan had invested money in a property business in Gurugram about five years ago and suffered losses. We are trying to trace Verma, but he has Moved out from his last known location in Ghaziabad’s Shalimar Garden,” the SSP said.

From a bathroom in the flat, police said they recovered one syringe, three glasses and several tablets of what they suspect to be a poisonous substance, along with a noose hanging from a fan in another room adjacent to where the children were found dead.

“We will know if they consumed any poisonous substance only after the post-mortem report. Prima facie, it appears that the daughter was strangled,” the SSP said.

“We found three chairs close to the edge of the balcony. The three adults probably stood on the chairs and toppled over. Before ending their Life they strangled the pet rabbit as well,” said a police officer.

“It is a probability that the man could have murdered the children as he also showed the video of their bodies to his friend. At this stage it is very difficult to say who actually killed the children. Investigation is underway,” said Manish Mishra, superintendent of police (City).

Vasudeva’s friend, 72-year-old Arora, said that on top of the losses suffered allegedly because of Verma, the businessman had come to know of a recent loss on the night of December 2. “Gulshan had borrowed money to invest in a property deal. However, he suffered a heavy losses in the deal. He told me that on December 2 he was scheduled to fly to Kolkata to finalise a separate business deal, but some men in the Kolkata-based firm apparently ran away with his money,” Arora said.

“At about 3.38am, Gulshan called me up to tell me that he lost about ?80-90 lakh in the Kolkata deal. On the video call he showed me his two dead kids… I tried to Stop him from taking his own life, but he switched his cellphone off… later, everything was finished,” he said.

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