Police said today that two brothers were arrested on Wednesday for allegedly killing their 28-year-old sister to protect the family ‘honour’ by forcing her to consume poison in Jasdan village of the district last month. According to police, the accused suspected that their sister Poonamben Vala, who had been living with her parents after being separated from her husband for the previous six years, had developed a relationship with a man who was opposed by the brothers.
Poonamben was kidnapped from her parents’ house in the city’s Saurashtra Kala Kendra area on May 25 by her elder siblings, Biren Vala and Rajvir Vala (both around 30), with the help of three accomplices, said a police officer. She was then taken to a farm near Jasdan village and forced to consume poison, according to the officer, who added that the accused cremated Poonamben’s body on May 25 in order to destroy evidence. In the beginning, police had filed an accidental death report in the case. The murder was uncovered after an unidentified person petitioned Rajkot police commissioner for an investigation into her death.
Biren and Rajvir’s roles came to light during the investigation, and they were arrested here today.”When we started cross examining the suspects, we came to know that the victim was kidnapped from her house and was subsequently poisoned. We arrested the two brothers and their interrogation revealed the murder,” police inspector, crime branch, H M Gadhvi said.
When asked why Poonamben’s parents didn’t lodge a complaint after she was kidnapped, the officer said the investigation is still going on. He said police have identified the three aides of the brother duo and efforts are on to trace them. “It is a case of honour killing as the accused brothers were not happy with the relationship their sister had developed outside of her marriage though she was living separately from her husband,” Gadhvi said.
Police have registered an FIR against five persons, including Biren and Rajvir, under sections 302 (murder), 120B (criminal conspiracy), 364 (kidnapping), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence) of the IPC, he added.