UP woman kills neighbour to elope with lover; sentenced to life imprisonment

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Meerut, Jan 3 (IANS) A court in Uttar Pradesh’s Meerut district has sentenced a woman to life imprisonment for killing her neighbour by setting her on fire.

The motive behind the crime was to show herself as dead and elope with her lover of another faith.

A testimony by the 13-year-old daughter of victim Zeenat Begum nailed the convict, identified as Afshana Begum (32), said the Additional District Government Counsel (ADGC) Mukesh Kumar Mittal.

The ADGC said on Tuesday that the crime came to light on April 2, 2019, when 48-year-old Zeenat was found dead inside a house in Lisari Gate police station area of Meerut.

“Zeenat was married to one Mohd Ashraf who used to mostly stay outdoors for work. Her friend Afshana, who lived in the same neighbourhood, used to often visit her house. Afshana fell in love with one Pravin Kumar, an auto driver, and both wanted to get married, but faith and the opposition from her kin came in the way,” the ADGC said.

Mittal added, “After watching a TV serial on crime she hatched a plot to kill Zeenat in her house. One day when Zeenat came to her house, Afshana set her on fire with a gas cylinder pipe. She thought everyone would take Zeenat’s badly burnt body to be hers and she would flee with her lover. But weeks later someone spotted her and the case took a different turn. During court hearings, Zeenat’s daughter said her mother would often go to ‘Afshana aunty’s house’ and that one day she did not return.”

Soon, a complaint was filed by Zeenat’s husband as she was last seen at Afshana’s house. The house was reopened and cops found Zeenat’s earrings, slippers and Aadhaar, which showed she was burnt to death.

Afshana was charged with murder and the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Pawan Shukla handed her life in jail.



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