Mungeli. The Mungeli Police have caught two serial killers who targeted widowed and lonely women in the state. The police have tied Santu Sahu and Shubham Vaishnav to the murder of two women. According to sources, they had entangled a third victim by the time the police traced them.
Discovery of a mutilated body of a woman at village Singhanpur on November 3 forced police into immediate action. A team led by Deputy Superintendent of Police Monika Singh went to investigate. There was a strong prima facie evidence of homicide, and a case against unknown accused under section 302, 201, was registered. Close examination of the crime scene revealed a photo of a woman. The woman in the photo is a resident of Chingrajpara. She told that one Santu Sahu had clicked this particular picture of her. After this, the police immediately detained him for questioning.
During interrogation, Santu Sahu confessed that the dead woman was Shivkumari Sahu. He also said that they had an affair and the deceased woman was pressuring him to marry her; so he and Shubham Vaishnav killed her. The murder was pre-meditated; they took her out on an outing and on reaching a pre-planned spot strangled her to death.
The method and place of death of the victim closely resembled another case. On July 22, 2019, the body of an unknown woman, later identified as Rukmini Rajput, was found in the same field. The cold case was with the Fasterpur Police Station. With the help of cyber forensics, the police collected evidence and later interrogated the duo. Both of them also confessed to the murder of Rukmini Rajput, resident of Bilaspur.
Rukmini Rajput went missing on July 21, 2019, but the family did not file a missing person report. Mohan Rajput, brother of the deceased woman, later identified her through clothes and belongings. Rukmini Rajput was also in love with the accused and had borrowed fifteen-thousand rupees from him. When she refused to return the money, Santu Sahu and Shubham Vaishnav killed her in the same manner. Luring her out on the pretext of an outing, and then strangling her.
Before they could kill their third victim, the police got them, solving this case in just seventy-two hours.