Journalism of Courage

Chef kills girlfriend, chops up body into 35 pieces

He kept the body parts in a fridge and gradually disposed of them in the forest in Mehrauli, going out at 2am every night for two weeks, police said.

Police in Indian are scouring a city forest on Tuesday for the remains of a young woman they say was killed and then chopped into 35 pieces by her boyfriend.

Aftab Ameen Poonawala, 28, allegedly strangled his girlfriend Shraddha Walkar, 26, on May 18 and then spent two days chopping up her body with a saw.

He kept the body parts in a fridge and gradually disposed of them in the forest in Mehrauli, going out at 2am every night for two weeks, police said.

He took out one or two body parts in a polythene bag each night and dumped them, sometimes in drains, using incense to mask the smell and detergent to clean the floor, police said.

Mr Poonawala, a chef, was arrested last weekend after Ms Walker’s father reported her missing. He has been charged with murder.

“We have arrested the man and interrogated him,” said Ankit Chauhan, Delhi’s Additional Commissioner of Police.

“He has revealed several details. We have formed an official team and recovered some body parts suspected to be of the victim. We are conducting search operations.

“He killed the woman on May 18 and chopped off body parts. He packed the body parts and slowly disposed of them.”

Police said that Mr Poonawala was inspired by Dexter, the US crime series that follows the story of a serial killer. He also searched the internet for tips on how to chop and dispose of the body.

Mr Poonawala and Ms Walkar met in Mumbai in 2019 and moved in together.

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