dr (major) nalini janardanan
“Rekha, Get up, you know ? It’s already 8 O’clock. I am getting late for office. “Rahul tried to wakeup his wife.
“No Rahul, let me sleep please don’t disturb me”. She turned and slept.
‘What I happening to our life nowadays ? Why is Rekha avoiding me? She has been a dutiful wife always attending to me. She used to shower me with care and love. But recently there is a change in her behaviour’. – Rahul thought. He watched the beautiful face of his wife. She smiled in sleep and her face lit up with a new charm. He remembered that nowadays Rekha spends a lot of time in make-up. Whenever Rahul mention about an evening out or dinner at some hotel she tries to find excuses. Of late, her telephone is also engaged for quite a longtime. Rahul blamed himself. ‘Why should I suspect my wife? She must be speaking to her friends from ladies club. She must be innocent. Of course I am not getting enough time to look after her due to various commitments in office’.
He took his briefcase and rushed to the office.
“Hello Rahul, How are you?”- It was (Mrs) Kulkarni, their neighbour.
“Fine, thank you. Is Mr. Kulkarni at home?”
“No, he has gone out for Chintu’s admission to school. By the way, how is your cousin brother? He is not seen now a days?”
Rahul stopped on the way hearing the words of (Mrs) Kulkarni. “Cousin brother? I don’t have any cousin brother.”
“Don’t tell me that you forgot him. Your wife introduced me to him. The handsome young man who takes your wife out on his motorcycle, when ever you go out of station on official tour”
Rahul tried to control his reaction. He was shocked to hear the news of a new character in his life. Is he Rekha’s lover? He must be the cause of the new charm on the radiant face of Rekha. A girl in love becomes more beautiful. He remembered the blush on her face and the dimple on her cheeks when she smiles.
“Sorry (Mrs) Kulkarni. I forgot about him. In fact I am getting late for the office and that is why I answered like that. Let me hurry up, see you, bye”
Rahul started his car. While driving he could not concentrate on the road.
He remembered their love marriage and how he loved Rekha
with his heart and soul. ‘How could Rekha do this to me? After all, I never denied her anything. I gave her everything which a lady needs – a good house, lot of money, and a loving husband. What more does she want?’
Rahul tried to control the steering wheel avoiding hitting a vehicle coming from the opposite direction.
‘I must put an end to this. She can’t do this to me. I will try to catch her redhanded – Then I will kill her, the bitch! My heart is burning with grief and the bitch is enjoying life’- Rahul thought.
The next day morning he came back to his house from his office. Instead of going inside the house he watched the house from a hidden corner behind the bushes. Around 10 O’clock in the morning he was surprised to see his wife going along with a handsome young man on a motorcycle. She was clinging to him and giggling like a newlywed woman. He suppressed his anger and made plans for his future action.
“Rekha, I am going on an official tour”. He told her during dinner.
“Tomorrow I am going to Pune. I will catch the Mumbai – Pune Express in the evening. So don’t make any dinner for me. I will be back only after a week. Take care. And try to keep in touch,
darling! You can always call me when you have any problem. I will be there for you, Ok?” Rahul smiled and embraced his wife. He was seething with anger inside but tried to act like a doting husband.
The next day Rahul caught the Mumbai – Pune Express at 7 O’clock in the evening. After one hour, he got down at a local station. He came out of the Railway station and approached a taxi driver. He requested the taxi driver to take him to his house in Mumbai as soon as possible. Rahul gave him plenty of money as taxi charge. So the driver was too happy to take him and wait out side his house. It was raining heavily when Rahul reached his house. He got down and entered the house through the kitchen using the duplicate key. He remembered how he used to enter the house through the kitchen when he comes back late after some parties. He went inside the drawing room and took the staircase to the bedroom on first floor.
Rahul saw his wife sleeping peacefully. When he thought about her infidelity, he became mad with anger . Taking out the dagger he stabbed her to death. After that he scattered the house hold items here and there just to create an impression that some robber did the crime. Rahul changed his shoes as they were soaked with mud. He kept them in his room. He came back and took the same taxi. He requested the driver to go at double speed to catch the train at next station. The driver wondered about what is happening.
But he was too happy with the money paid to him that he did not bother about the passenger. Rahul managed to catch the train to Pune.
The next day the murder was noticed by the maid servant. She informed the police. She also rang up Rahul at Pune and requested him to come as soon as possible. When Rahul reached home the house was crowded with neighbours and police.
Arun Nambiar, the famous detective was inspecting the scene. He had a good police dog with him. Rahul entered the drawing room. He suddenly broke down into tears seeing his wife’s dead body. “Oh Rekha!, I can’t bear this. Who did this to you? I love you so much. Please don’t leave me alone. Take me also along with you. Oh God! How can I live without my Rekha”
Arun Nambiar carefully observed the husband.
“I’m sorry Mr. Rahul. But where were you last night when the crime took place?”
“I was in Pune. I went on an official tour”.
“When did you go to Pune?”
“I went by the Mumbai – Pune Express at 7 O’clock in the evening yesterday. Oh God! I didn’t know that this will happen to my Rekha”.
“OK Mr Rahul, we are really sorry . We should take her body for postmortem.”
Rahul acted like a loving husband who got shocked to see his wife murdered.
Somewhere in his mind Arun Nambiar had a slight doubt about Rahul. Somehow he could not convince himself that Rahul is innocent.
After smelling the dead body the police dog went straightaway to Rahul’s room. It started barking near the mud-soaked shoes.
‘Whose shoes are these?’ Arun asked . “Oh they are my shoes”. Rahul replied. Arun Nambiar took them alongwith him to the police station.
Rahul was upset with the sudden turn of events. But he reassured himself that he could not be proved to be the murderer . Rahul had a good alibi. He was in Pune last night .
Arun Nambiar was also thinking the same. Rahul was in Pune last night. In fact he showed the train ticket also. Arun checked with the hotel in Pune and confirmed that Rahul stayed there over night. But the case is making him more and more confused. How could the husband commit a crime like this?
Arun came to know from (Mrs) Kuilkarni that one young man used to take Rakha on his motor cycle when Rahul is away. Arun Nambiar realized that this is a case of extramarital affair. There is strong possibility of Rahul being the murderer. ‘But how to prove the crime? With a good alibi and strong proof in favour of him, how can I arrest him?’ Arun thought.
He tried to think about the minute details of the case. ‘This case is like a puzzle. I should keep all the pieces in such a way that proper picture is formed’. Suddenly he remembered about the mud soaked shoes of Rahul. He remembered how the police dog sniffed the shoes and started barking.
Arun remembered that it rained heavily last night. So Rahul must have come home in the rains last night. But how is it possible when he claims to be in Pune?Arun Nambiar analysed all possibilities in his mind. All of a sudden, a thought flashed in his mind. Could it be possible that Rahul took a taxi and came to his house?
Arun rushed to the Taxi stand and tried to question all taxi drivers. One of them identified the photograph of Rahul. The driver narrated the whole incident. He explained how he brought Rahul home from a local station and how they caught the train from the next station. The driver told specifically that he waited outside his
house for about half an hour and it was raining heavily that time.
Arun Nambiar was much excited about his new discovery. He arrested the killer – Rahul. Sobbing with guilt, Rahul confessed his crime – “The perfect murder” of his wife. ‘Not so perfect’ – chuckled Arun Nambiar who was a genius in his profession.