M A I N   N E W S

‘Murder’ aboard cruise-liner
‘She sent SOS before her death’
Sunit Dhawan
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, January 2
Neha, 23, daughter-in-law of Gurgaon Civil Surgeon Dr SS Dalal, got killed under suspicious circumstances on a luxury ship on way from Miami in the USA to Bahamas.

Nearly an hour before her death, Neha had reportedly sent an e-mail to her brother, Anuj Chhikara, a local advocate, complaining about torture by her husband.

In the e-mail, reportedly sent on the afternoon of December 31, 2009, Neha had written that her husband Ankit Dalal, a manager with the Royal Caribbean Cruise “Monarch of Seas”, often used to get impulsive and beat her up without any reason.

They were on the same ship when the incident took place. Neha reportedly fell down from the 12th deck of the cruise-liner.

In her last e-mail, a copy of which is with The Tribune, Neha had also alleged that Ankit did not want her to work on the cruise-liner and had beaten her up badly on that day. According to Neha’s family members, she got killed about an hour after she sent the e-mail. Neha’s parents and brother approached the police, but no FIR had been lodged till late this evening.

On being asked why an FIR had not been lodged in the case, Gurgaon Police Commissioner SS Deswal said they were seeking legal opinion regarding the matter. Neha’s father-in-law Dr SS Dalal was not available for comments.

Neha’s brother Anuj, however, alleged the police was under pressure from Neha’s father-in-law Dr Dalal. “Dr Dalal often used to boast of his high connections with the state authorities,” he said. Anuj said Neha was married to Ankit on October 5, 2008. According to her brother and parents, Neha’s husband and in-laws used to harass and pressurise her for bringing dowry.

“Neha used to complain about physical and mental torture by her husband and in-laws…We tried to fulfil their demands as far as possible and hoped that things would improve, but we did not know that we would lose our beloved daughter like this,” said Neha’s father Suresh and mother Rajni Chhikara. Neha’s family alleged she had been murdered and the police was trying to delay the registration of an FIR to give sufficient time to her in-laws to get anticipatory bail.



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