Man held in Bengaluru over murder of perfumer Ghurde

A man has been arrested from Bengaluru in connection with the murder of perfume specialist Monica Ghurde, whose naked body was found in her rented flat near here, Goa Police said on Sunday. Rajkumar Singh, a native of Punjab, was nabbed late on Saturday night with help from the police of Karnataka capital and was being brought to Goa, a top official said.

“A team of Goa Police arrested one Rajkumar Singh in Bengaluru in connection with the Monica Ghurde murder case,” Deputy Inspector General of Police Vimal Gupta said. Police declined to provide further details.

A senior police official said they were tracking the movement of the accused during his journey through Maharashtra and Karnataka on the basis of his ATM transactions. After the murder, Singh took away Ghurde’s ATM card and mobile phone.

Police sources said the accused had withdrawn money at several locations in Maharashtra, including Miraj (Sangli district) and Nashik, before travelling to Karnataka.

The 39-year-old’s naked body was found at her rented flat in Sangolda village near Calangute beach in Goa on October 6. She had shifted to the flat in July this year after separating from her husband. A post-mortem on Saturday revealed that she died of strangulation, but it was not clear if she was raped. A few hours before her death, Ghurde had spoken to her Mumbai-based brother Anand.

“Anand had called her around 7.30 pm on October 5. She told him she would be moving out after some time. This is the last known communication she had with anyone,” Superintendent of Police (North) Umesh Gaonkar reporters earlier on Sunday.

Gaonkar said the CCTV footage of the building where she stayed was being scanned for clues. Investigation has revealed that on October 5 afternoon a renowned businessman had seen Ghurde at a coffee shop in Porvorim, located 5 km from her house.

Gaonkar said the coffee shop, owned by a well-known chain, does not have CCTV cameras. Ghurde had done her photography course from Mumbai’s JJ Institute of Applied Arts.
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