She sat in the Starbucks cafe, sipping her coffee and staring out of the window. The blood stained knife lay next to her handbag, covered with her blue silk scarf….how drastically the life has changed in the past few hours is beyond her imagination. It’s something beyond her control, to avoid the situation that has led her to pick up a knife that she has not even used for the very purpose it is meant for,leave alone to kill.Thinking about the next step of the plan she is now plotting to evade the police,after all,one mistake does not mean that she will spend her entire youth in jail,and specifically when,she is not the actual culprit,what she has done was to protect her dignity and life.
Maya has always considered her family as her strength,but she wasn’t sure whether they would pass this litmus test of the trust,and belief in her.That night no one was at home,which wasn’t something unusual,as after her mother’s death,and her father’s retirement,who, for most part of the year keep travelling to their parental home in Pune and maternal home in Lucknow.His brother had went to Bangalore for his post graduation,from past 2 years.Life was going fine, before this unusual incident that took place 2 days back.
Maya has always been a gem of her parents eyes and darling of his only brother, Nikhil,who she loved more than anyone else in this world.She has been punished so many times and taken his blames on her,even after he had completed his high school.In return he loved and pampered her as a princess.Things were smooth till one fine day,the soul of the family left them away forever.Anita,her mom was the pillar of strength,but after her death,things changed and dinner table conversations stopped and all that family outings,as no one was there to plan it,neither the dinner,nor the outings.Nikhil completed the last year of his graduation and moved to Bangalore ,just to get out of the vacuum. his mom has created in that huge Duplex villa in the upscale Defence colony of Delhi.Maya had just completed her masters in fashion designing from the top fashion school in Delhi and had just started internship with one of the top designers of the country,when her mom died.
Anita died in an accident, at least it seemed to be an accident,from the surface.Everyone believed apart from Maya,because she knew that it wasn’t .Just few hours before her death,she called in regarding someone who came that morning to enquire about Maya at their residence.He was a familiar face although Anita didnt knew the name,it was Mayank,Maya’s ex-boyfriend,Mayank who broke more than 2 years back during her graduation.She never discussed about him but he had been to their place once or twice to drop her late at night.Anita told about his visit to Maya 3 hours before her death when she called her to warn her to stay alert.
That was her last call.Hours later,her dad called her to break the news of her death, a cylinder that blasted in their kitchen killed her.Everyone in the family believed that theory and post mortem did not detect any foul play,so it was easier for others to believe about the incident as an unfortunate accident,but none was aware of that unusual phone call and her boyfriends visit,that’s why she was not able to come to terms of her death as an accident.
She was sitting there,sipping the hot coffee and the revisiting all the events that has changed her life forever.She was just thinking of the places where she can dispose that blood stained knife,finally she felt the best place to dispose it must be out of the city.She was aware that it will be a risk as the police must be looking for the weapon through which the victim was killed,but she has to ensure that she didn’t get caught,after all….She being caught would be the final note in the destruction of the entire family.Her father being a heart patient would not be able to digest the news of her killing, rather murdering someone.His brother would go in depression,or probably commit suicide because of the guilt.
She thought of the idea of throwing that knife somewhere in the way to her maternal home in lucknow,so that no one will question her for going out of the city just after that murder as police was suspicious of her being associated with that murder in punjabi bagh, as Raj was her classmate during her masters years and was considered to be a good friend of Maya,and police wanted to call her for some regular enquiry to the police station,and she just said a clear “NO”,giving some random health reason.
She took a bus to Lucknow from the bus terminal after taking an auto from CP to bypass,as going through metro and security checking at bus stops was quite risky.She reached bypass at half past 7.Took a deluxe night bus to Lucknow,and left,she informed Nikhil about her trip to her maternal home and was very restrained in talking to him,as she felt that her phone might be tapped as she was there at the party at his friends place.She just said Nikhil,that she want a break from all these happening,so going to their aunt and will be back in a week.Before he would have said anything,she disconnected the call.
He was just wondering what should be done here,but maya was determined and confident of what should be done.She stopped at a food joint where bus stopped for refreshment,went to the loo,locked herself in,and washed the knife of all the blood,removed the blood stains and fingerprints,and dried it with a handkerchief,put it in a polybag and kept it back in her purse,and later threw it in the drain flowing nearby before boarding the bus again.She was sure that none can find the weapon now and was much relieved by the fact that she no longer carries the weapon of murder along with her.
Some time passed at her aunt’s place and she came back to delhi.Later she has to face the police,after coming back to delhi,as ignoring their calls further, could lead to their suspicion getting strong.She met the police and told them about her friendship with Raj,and how he has so much enemies because of her frank nature and his regular fights with college seniors and told them about his long time rivalry with 2 – 3 people in college,just to tick the needle of suspicion on them.Maya was never that evil but when it comes to save her family,she can go to any length.Her father accompanied her to the police station as he was back in city after the news.He was disturbed but did not knew the truth.
The case as usual because of no circumstantial evidence was going no where and finally come to a dead end till it was given to crime branch after few years…..by an appeal filed in High court by Rajs parents.In all those years life came to path and Maya got married and was today a leading fashion designer in the fashion circuit and Nikhil was also engaged to her long time girlfriend.Maya has not forgotten anything and the memories of Raj still haunt her,but ofcourse they have faded in the past 6 years,as she kept herself busy in work and her 3 year old baby daughter.
One fine day,she got a summon from the court as someone has put the blame of Raj’s death on her,who said that he saw her going upstairs with Raj just before the murder, and the news was spent in media as wildfire,because of her reputation in society.she visited court and hear the petition,got the best lawyer appointed to defend her,when everything seemed fine,why the hell , life has take her back to those faded memories,she told her lawyer the entire truth,after all,now she need someone to confide and she trusted the lawyer,Nalini Singh,her husband’s family friend for decades.
She told the entire story……”I was at his party,in a upscale hotel in Punjabi Bagh,where he has invited 16 people apart from her,which includes my ex boyfriend Mayank as well.The music was loud and everyone seemed drunk and after few drinks Raj started misbehaving with me and forced me to drink vodka and whisky,although I am a social drinker but he made me drink for the sake of our friendship and all,and sarcastically said that I don’t trust him.So I drank 3 shots of vodka along with other friends and then he took me to the 2nd floor of the hotel,where a room was booked by him,he took me inside on pretext of giving me a surprise and locked the room and started kissing me and misbehaved.I tried to run out of room but was so drunk to reach the door, he again forced him on me and I slapped him,that was the time Raj lost his calm and started abusing and tried to sexually assault me,I pushed him hard but cannot run towards the door as he fall in front of the door and blocked the way to the exit,so I locked myself in the attached bathroom of the same room,I have lost my phone somewhere downstairs,so cant call anyone.I was just waiting and praying for someone to come miraculously and save me.I came to my senses to some extent and the trauma helped me to come out of the effect of alcohol.
Raj was banging the door,and asking me to come out and face the consequences and told me about how her mother’s death was not an accident but he had killed her by paying the delivery guy to send the faulty cylinder to your place.He further said that he asked her mom for my hand and shown his desire to get married to me,but she clearly said no and threatened him to call the police and get him arrested.I was shocked,such truth coming at this moment,the effect of alcohol faded further and I came to complete senses,everything that seemed revolving earlier, because of the 3 shots of vodka and 5 pegs of whiskey came to standstill.Tears rolled through my eyes.
The lock of the bathroom was almost on the verge of getting broken,when i came to my senses and started looking for some escape and found a window in bathroom,I went to window,and opened it ,somehow and started shouting,as luck has planned it,someone was standing there and although he didn’t see me but when I started throwing the bath accessories like towel and soap bar from the window,one of the guys noticed it,It was none other than Mayank…He was there smoking a butt,and noticed me,and detecting something wrong,he started running to help me out.
In the mean time the lock broke,and Raj came inside and started slapping and beating me up,but I ran outside towards the room,after pushing me much harder than earlier.Raj also came behind me, but slipped on the bathroom floor,he started bleeding badly as he had hurt his head,as I tried to help him out by going close to him,he again grabbed me by my arm,and i was dumbstruck and I saw a knife in the fruit bowl,on the side table of the bed which i catch hold off,and attacked him on his arm and the second time on chest,and he let me off. I got off from there,took the knife along and ran out of the room,I only want to say at the end,Nalini, that he did not died of my attacks,but because of excessive bleeding from his head,that proves that I am innocent to a great extent,if not fully at least partially.What I did was nothing but self defence.
Mayank came there and dropped me at my place,and I narrated the whole story to him in the way,and he promised to not name me anywhere,and appreciated my bravery.I didn’t get the time to thank him for the help,nor i got the time to ask him why he visited my mom that day.He left the country never to return after few months”.
Nalini was happy that a women has stood up for her and as she has herself gone through the entire autopsy and postmortem reports,she knew,Maya is telling the truth,Maya was relieved as she felt light after confiding in her although she doesn’t know about her fate.
Nalini fought the case and within record 7 hearings,the case was closed after high court PRONOUNCING Raj’s death as an accident.
The life has come full circle as that’s how her mother’s well executed murder was termed as an accident.The world respected her for what she has done to save herself,and set an example in the society,that a women should not be afraid of self defence,and should not feel threatened by the warnings of dire consequences if they resisted their advances.