Delhi airhostess jumps to death over dowry demands

New Delhi: An air hostess working with German airline carrier Lufthansa died after falling from the fourth floor of her house in south Delhi’s Panchsheel Park on Friday afternoon. The family of the woman later alleged murder and also claimed that her husband and in-laws were harassing her for dowry.

Romil Baaniya, deputy commissioner of police (south), said a case under section 304B (dowry death) of the Indian Penal Code has been registered at Hauz Khas police station. The accused were yet to be arrested.

Though the woman’s family members claimed it to be a murder case, the DCP said that messages sent by the woman to her husband’s mobile phone, moments before her death, indicated that it wasn’t a murder.

The 39-year-old victim, Anissia Batra, was the daughter of a retired Indian Army Major General. She was married to software engineer Mayank Singhvi for the last two-and-a-half years, said the DCP. They lived in one of the two houses owned by her husband’s family in Panchsheel Park neighbourhood, said the officer.

Anissia’s brother Karan Batra alleged that she was regularly abused and beaten by her husband as well as her in-laws. “Singhvi would hit my mother too. Sometimes, my sister would be left locked out of her home,” alleged Batra, reports Hindustan Times.

Batra said last month his father had visited the Hauz Khas police station and submitted a letter saying Singhvi should be held responsible if Anissia was harmed in any way. Singhvi was unavailable for any comments.

“Singhvi has told us that around 4.30pm on Friday, he received a message from his wife who informed him that she was going to jump to her death. He claimed to have run upstairs to check, but found the terrace door locked from the outside,” said the DCP.

“Singhvi then used a window to stick his hand out and unlock the door. He, however, couldn’t find his wife on the terrace. He then ran downstairs where a labourer told him that a woman had just jumped down,” the DCP added.

Anissia’s parents told the police that she was being harassed by her husband and in-laws for dowry. “The police considered registering a case of dowry death, but my sister was murdered. She was pushed off the terrace, but the police is choosing to believe only Singhvi’s version,” alleged Batra.

The DCP said a decision to arrest Singhvi will be taken after completion of the initial enquiry.

“The post-mortem has been conducted, but the woman’s family wanted it recorded on video. We will request for a second autopsy,” said the deputy commissioner of police.