Actress Lavina Bhatia has been arrested in the case of actor Kunal Singh who was found hanging in his flat in Windemere Apartments in Oshiwara on February 6th, 2008. She has been remanded in police custody until November 26th. Initially the police had thought the matter a suicide but after having been approached by Singh’s father, Col Rajendra Singh, 59, they have now re-opened the case. Col Singh said that after reclaiming the body of Kunal from the hospital, he found a number of cuts and bruises which suggested that Kunal had been murdered and then hung to make it look like a suicide. “The injury on his right arm suggested that someone was holding him from the back,” Col Singh said, “Also, there were strangulation marks on the neck. It was below where it should have been if he had hanged himself. It seemed like he had been hanged after being strangulated. Moreover, he was found hanging with one of his legs on the sofa and the other one on a suitcase, which was unbelievable.”
Mysteriously, however, Singh and Bhatia were said to be alone in the flat together at the time of the incident. In Bhatia’s original statement, she said she went to the toilet and returning ten minutes later found Singh hanging from the ceiling fan. Kunal had appeared in Gangotri with Bhoomika and Mai Baap with Rati Agnihotri, the Kollywood film Kandhalar Dinam and the Bollywood remake Dil Hi Dil Mein with Sonali Bendre, the soundtrack by AR Rahman, being described as one of the musician‘s favourites. Lavina had just started in the industry and had worked with Kunal in Yogi.
Col Singh is disdainful of the police who had declared his son’s death a suicide after just 45 minutes. “An hour before his death, he had sent a text message to music director Dabu Mallik inviting him to come over to his house,” he argued, “Why would he call or message anyone if he had decided to kill himself?” Col Singh believes the murder was carried out by mobsters in relation to a land case.
Insp Gadekar of the Versova police said, “After the court order, the case was re-investigated and a murder case was registered. We suspect Laveena’;s role in the crime. She was arrested on Sunday under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code.”