One Arranged Murder

Hello, this is Saurabh Maheshwari speaking, taking over from Lordship Keshav for only a short while. I am on way to meet my fiancée Prerna on Karva Chauth.

A white cab came in. Anjali stepped out. She had her backpack with her, which seemed heavy and huge compared to her skinny frame. ‘Adi Mamu, what’s up?’ she said in a cheerful voice, with the hint of an American accent.

On pages of Delhi Times, which had an interview with Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt, we placed Prerna on her back. I needed someone. The one and only person in the world who could help me think through this situation. I took out my phone.

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He was standing outside when I arrived. Internet entrepreneur Prerna Malhotra, 26, succumbed to her death Thursday night after she fell off the terrace of her three-storey house in New Friends Colony. Saurabh broke down. I patted his back as he continued to cry.

Four days after the funeral, we accompanied Inspector Singh to the Malhotra residence. ‘How can we find out anything if I can’t interrogate them? Chit-chat won’t get us anywhere.’

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Saurabh and I had organized a dinner at Lotus Pond, a Chinese restaurant in K Block of New Friends Colony. Anjali was the first person to reach the venue. Ramesh arrived with Maaji, Neelam and Bindu. ‘So, Adi killed?’ ‘This is pretty solid evidence.’

All of us entered Adi’s apartment. He lay still, a sliver of sunshine lighting the stubble on his face. ‘He could have intentionally overdosed himself.’ ‘Maybe it is simple. He felt he would get caught..’

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‘Prerna and I were Sisters. Twin Sisters.’ ‘Yes, Inspector Sir. It’s been our secret for decades.’ Neelam Aunty hugged Bindu as the latter finished telling her story. ‘They were raised as Ramesh’s and Geetu’s Daughters’.

‘God knows I’ve never treated her less than my own. Bindu, swear upon Maaji, did I ever discriminate?’

‘You confess? You moved Seventy Crore Rupees from Eato?’ Cops forced Ramesh into the Police Gypsy.

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The Fifty Shades Series consists of Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. With her silver bracelets, tattoos and leather jacket, Anjali could have passed off as a character in Fifty Shades. ‘I am not totally into it. I don’t want to be beaten up, for instance.’ ‘But yes, a drop of pain makes it more exciting, doesn’t it?’ The vodka began to take effect. ‘Seize the day, Dead Poets Society.’

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‘Fuck you, Keshav,’ Anjali screamed. ‘The relationship helped me confirm something. And for what it’s worth, I did love you.’ The curiosity here in unbelievable. ‘Twins have identical DNA.’

‘Anjali went to see Adi later. He wanted to come clean. They made love. She overdosed him.’

Chetan Bhagat, One Arranged Murder, (Westland, 2020).

One Arranged Murder