22 year old Sajjad Ahmed Mughal, who was employed as a watchman at the 'Himalayan Heights' has been convicted by the Sessions Judge Vrushali Joshi for molestation, murder and criminal trespassing in the Pallavi Purkayastha murder case that happened in 2012. She was the daughter of IAS officer Atanu Purkayastha, who was the joint secretary in the Agriculture Ministry at the Centre when the incident took place.
Mumbai lawyer Pallavi Purkayastha was found brutally murdered in her rented flat in Wadala on 9th August, 2012. The watchman, Pathan, a native of Kashmir entered the flat with stolen keys and tried to force himself over the lawyer who was sleeping. After resistance from her side, her throat was slashed with a knife. According to Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy “he grievously harmed her in a manner from which she could not recover”.
The guard reportedly used to ogle at the lawyer and had been rebuked by her for staring inappropriately.
The Crime Branch had filed a 434-page charge sheet on October 30, 2012 against Mughal charging him with trespass and murder.
However, Mughal denied all the allegations and his lawyer Wahab Khan had submitted that it was Pallavi’s fiancé Avik Sengupta who killed her in their flat.
Pallavi's live-in partner Avik Sengupta died later at Mahim's PD Hinduja hospital after suffering from inflammatory brain disorder. He had testified in the case and has been a crucial witness.
Soon after the conviction, Pallavi’s parents demanded death penalty for the culprit and expressed approval with the police investigation.
The hearing has been adjourned till July 3 on the request of Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam, to hear the arguments as well as the quantum of punishment.