Character assassination of Talwars was unfair, say neigbours

July 12th, 2008 - 2:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Noida, July 12 (IANS) Friends and neighbours of Rajesh Talwar are relieved that the dentist finally walked out of jail Saturday after being cleared of the murders of his teenaged daughter and domestic help. But they are angry at the character assassination of the Talwars by the Noida police and the media. B.K. Sharma, a neighbour of Rajesh Talwar’s father-in-law, said he always knew that Aarushi’s father was innocent.

“I have known the Talwars for a long time now. Earlier they used to stay in a rented apartment here and Aarushi used to visit us every day. To even think that her father could have committed such a crime was unthinkable. And now the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) has just proved that,” 75-year-old Sharma said.

While most residents of Jal Vayu Vihar in Noida, where the Talwar’s reside, chose to ignore the hordes of television crews camping in the neighbourhood after Rajesh Talwar was given a clean chit, many lashed out at the media.

“Why did the media paint such a gory picture of the Talwars before anything was proved in court?” asked an angry Saurabh Sharma, a resident.

“It’s just not fair the way the media and the police handled the entire affair. With no proof, the young girl, who was not there to defend herself anymore, was painted in bad light and an impression was created that her father was her killer. This is not responsible behaviour,” Sharma told IANS late Friday.

The Noida police too came have come under constant fire - first for their shoddy investigation into the murders of Aarushi and her family help Hemraj, and secondly for arresting Rajesh Talwar for the killings without any evidence.

The Noida Police arrested Talwar May 23 and claimed that he killed Aarushi because she had stumbled upon his affair with a fellow dentist and had been discussing it with her friends.

Inspector General of Police Gurdarshan Singh had also claimed that his objection to his daughter’s alleged close relations with Hemraj prompted him to kill them both. However, Aarushi’s mother Nupur had constantly claimed that her husband was innocent of the crime he had been charged with.

“The whole episode was jarring. And to top it, all kinds of assumptions and stories were doing the rounds in the media. The past two months have left us and specially our children shocked,” said Anubha Shukla, another Jal Vayu Vihar resident.

Rajesh Talwar walked out of Dasna Jail in Ghaziabad after 51 days of imprisonment Saturday morning. With tears in his eyes, he was seen hugging his wife Nupur. The dentist’s visibly relieved relatives, who had been waiting outside the jail, whisked him to a car even as hundreds of media persons surrounded them.

Fourteen-year-old Aarushi was found dead May 16 in the Talwar’s Noida home. The police initially named the Talwars’ domestic help Hemraj as the prime suspect, but had to retract after his body was found the next day on the terrace of the house. Rajesh Talwar was arrested May 23 and police said he killed his daughter in a fit of rage as he objected to her alleged closeness with Hemraj.

The CBI Friday cleared Rajesh Talwar of all charges and named his compounder Krishna and Rajkumar, the servant of close family friends Durranis, as those behind the murders.

But Krishna’s relatives and some social activists are not happy with the turn of events.

“Something is not quite right. I am no expert, but I wonder why the poor are always held responsible for such ghastly acts,” said Prana Singh, a social activist.

Sunita, Krishna’s niece, had tearfully said Friday that her uncle was held because he doesn’t have the power of money.

“Why don’t they (the police) simply take all the servants and hold them responsible for some crime or the other? My uncle today is suffering because he is poor…he is innocent,” she said.

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