Sheena murder mystery: Peter Mukherjea claims CBI erred, bail plea rejected

Through his advocate, Mukherjea claimed that before his wife Indrani's arrest, he had "no idea that Sheena was dead."

In the high-profile Sheena Bora murder case, former media baron Peter Mukherjea told the Bombay high court on Tuesday that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had erred in charging him for his step-daughter’s murder and the bail has been rejected by the court.

Reportedly, through his advocate, Mukherjea claimed that before his wife Indrani’s arrest, he had “no idea that Sheena was dead.” Peter’s counsel Abad Ponda argued that the CBI had no direct evidence against him and was instead relying upon just two things to create a chain of circumstantial evidence — “motive, and phone calls between him and Indrani.”

Defending the case, Ponda argued that the motive that the CBI had attributed to Peter — that he did not approve of the relationship between his son Rahul and Sheena — was not correct. He claimed that Mukherjea had only objected to Rahul and Sheena living together in Mumbai considering their young age.

He also pointed out that the frequent phone calls between the couple were not unusual as they were “husband and wife and were in two separate countries at the time.” He added that CBI had no transcripts of those phone calls.

“If a bunch of phone calls can be used as incriminating evidence then several others who were in touch with Indrani, including joint police commissioner Deven Bharti, should be made co-accused in the case,” he said.

Counsel for the case also emphasized that the phone calls and emails exchanged among Peter Mukherjea, Indrani Mukherjea, and Rahul Mukherjea must be considered in “totality” and urged the court to consider his argument that in all of this, Indrani was the only one who knew “the truth about Sheena,” and that “Peter had simply been henpecked and was foolish to believe everything that Indrani told him and took her word that Sheena was alive.”

Ponda also said that he had been booked by CBI for desturction of evidence as well, which is a bailable offense, and therefore, he urged the court to grant him bail.

Reportedly, CBI argued against the plea in High Court on Wednesday and the bail plea has been rejected. Earlier, during the hearing, Justice NW Sambre, who was presiding over the plea, had suggested that Peter Mukherjea take his bail plea to the sessions court in light of the CBI having filed additional information through its supplementary chargesheet.

It has been reported that according to the CBI, Indrani Mukherjea along with her driver and her ex-husband, had strangulated Sheena Bora on April 24, 2012. It has been said that even though Peter was in the United Kingdom at the time, CBI had argued that he “had knowledge” of the incident and that he had “conspired with Indrani” in the crime.