Wife paid sister over Rs 2 lakh to kill retired bank manager

MUMBAI: The Charkop police team, which solved the murder of a retired bank manager missing for a year, found out that his wife Asha Wankhede (56) paid Rs 2.25 lakh to her sister Vandana Thorve (40), to help to kill him on April 11, 2016.

Vandana agreed to help as her daughter was expecting and she required money for the baby shower on April 14, 2016. According to the plan, Asha and her husband Prakash reached Ahmednagar on April 10, 2016. Next day the accused spiked his food and later Asha, Vandana and the latter’s boyfriend Nilesh Supekar (32), hit him on the head with an iron rod, killing him on the spot.

Asha registered a missing complaint back home in Charkop on April 27, 2016, but for almost a year, police in Charkop made no headway in the case. Meanwhile, Parner police in Ahmednagar, who found Wankhede’s body, disposed of it later as they failed to identify the deceased.

But on April 7, 2017, acting on a tipoff that Wankhede was murdered and had not gone missing, deputy commissioner of police (zone XI) Vikram Deshmane formed a team comprising assistant commissioner of police Shrirang Nadgauda, Malvani senior inspector Dipak Phatangare, and Charkop inspector Popat Yele. “The informer said Wankhede was killed by his own wife,” said investigators.

After collecting call data records of the victim and the accused between to April 10 to 12, 2016, the team suspected Asha’s role.

The team picked up Asha on Sunday and during interrogation she confessed to killing her husband with help from her sister and the sister’s boyfriend at her Ahmednagar residence on April 11, 2016. The body was wrapped in a gunny bag and dumped 27 km away from his sister-in-law’s Ahmednagar residence.

The victim’s three sons told the cops that they were fed up with the daily fights between their parents which made them move out of the house. The three sons lived in Bhayander, Mira Road and Navi Mumbai. “Prakash Wankhede got suspicious about his wife’s character after retirement, which led to constant fights. Asha said this was the reason she planned to kill him,” said the investigators.

Asha also told investigators that a previous attempt to kill him in February 2016 at her Ahmednagar home failed. Later, Asha approached her sister Vandana and her boyfriend Nilesh and paid them Rs1lakh as an advance in March. ” Asha gave the remaining Rs 1.25 lakh to her sister after returning to Kandivli on April 12, 2016. The money was withdrawn from three bank accounts using three ATM cards,” said the investigators.
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