Body tumbles out of temple wall in Mumbai

Saturday, 4 January 2014 - 8:17am IST | Agency: DNA
43-year-old worker at Dahisar shrine was missing for three days; plumber finds body while fixing kitchen tap.

The semi-decomposed body of a 43-year-old man was found hidden beneath tiles at the Vitthal Rakhmai Mandir, Dahisar (East) on Friday. According to the police, the body of Dattu Linga Attapalli had been buried the periphery of a low concrete culvert-like structure abutting a wall on the fourth floor of the temple.

The crime came to light after a plumber found fingers sticking out beneath some tiles. The police said Attapalli, who hailed from Andhra Pradesh, was a conservancy worker and lived on the temple premises at Anand Nagar. His 20-year-old son, Suresh, also works at the place of worship.

“The body was buried in the wall of a drainage outlet and then covered with tiles and sealed a few days ago. The drainage outlet hole was one feet deep. He was attacked with a sharp weapon. there were injury marks on his head and all over the body,” said a police officer.

On Friday afternoon, a man had come to check the tap on the fourth floor when he saw Attapalli’s body parts and notice a foul odour emanating from the place.

The plumber started yelling following which people gathered at the spot.  They then informed the Dahisar police. The cops immediately took out the body and sent for post-mortem.

The police said Attapalli had been working on the temple premises for the past one year. He had gone missing about three days ago.

According to the police, Akkapalli last met the security guard of the temple on late December 30. He was in an inebriate state and was sleeping on the footpath outside the temple. However, his son never filed a missing person’s complaint.

The Dahisar police have registered a case of murder and destruction of evidence.

“Prima facie, this looks like he was killed due to some fight. A lot of workers live and work around the temple. We are rounding up everyone for questioning. Investigations are on,” said a police officer.

The police are trying to investigate if Attapalli had any enmity with any of the workers. The police suspect that the temple staff could have been behind the crime as only they get access to the fifth floor.

“As of now, none of the staff working there has gone missing. Renovation work is progress in the temple, so there are several hundreds of people working there round the clock.”

The police officer said that they were also checking the footages from the CCTVs installed at the temple.

Murder, destruction of evidence at a place of worship
A plumber, who had come to check a tap at the kitchen on the fourth floor of the temple saw fingers sticking out beneath some tiles. He also noticed foul odour emanating from the place

Deceased Dattu Attapalli, a conservancy worker, used to live on the temple premises. He had gone missing three days ago, but his son, who too lives there, had not filed a missing person complaint.

Currently, many labourers are working at the temple, where renovation work is going on. The Dahisar police  suspect the murder could have been due to some enmity with fellow workers.

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