The eight children murdered by Husnain included his three-month-old daughter Umera. One of his sisters, Subina Bharmal, 22, is the only survivor. Husnain Warerkar (inset)
Mumbai: A 35-year-old Thane resident allegedly killed 14 members of his family — including his parents, wife, two daughters, three sisters and their children — at his Thane house before committing suicide in the early hours of Sunday.
According to the police, Husnain Warerkar, a commerce graduate who used to prepare Income Tax-related documents for a CA firm in Navi Mumbai, first sedated his family members and then slit their throats with a butcher’s knife. When the police reached the incident spot, they found 14 bodies with throats slit on the ground and first floor of the house. Husnain’s body was found hanging, with a knife still in his hand.
Among the seven children murdered by Husnain, was his three month-old daughter, Umera. One of his sisters, Subina Bharmal (22), is the only survivor of the ghastly incident. Though the police has recorded Subina’s statement, the motive is still not clear. According to Thane police source, the angle of black magic has cropped up in the case as Husnain used to visit the dargah and was in touch with a godman since his family was poisoned in 2012.
All the members were admitted to Titan Hospital at the time, but later case was dissolved. According to the police, Husnain lived with his parents, wife, two daughters and an unmarried sister. On Saturday, he had invited his three other married sisters and their children for a family get-together.
Joint commissioner of police Ashutosh Dhumbre said that they suspect that Husnain offered them drinks laced with sedatives, following which he slit their throats.
Husnain offered prayers at around 3 am at a mosque near his house, said the police after speaking to some of his neighbours. It is suspected that after returning home, he slit the throats of his family members one-by-one and then committed suicide by hanging himself.
At around 5.30 am, lone survivor Subina shouted for help from the window of the house, following which neighbours gathered there and broke open the window grill.
They pulled the injured woman out and admitted her to a hospital. They also alerted the police. While some neighbours took Subina to the hospital, a few of them went to Kasarwadawli police station.
DCP V.B. Chandanshive, while talking to The Asian Age, said, "We got a call and reached the spot within 10 minutes. We saw all the bodies lying in a pool of blood and Husnain hanging from a hook on the slab near the staircase of the house. He had a knife in his hand. He has killed everyone in the same way by slitting their throats.
The bodies of two of his daughters were found near the staircase. The murders are terrifying. We are investigating the reason behind his sudden act. We suspect that he had given them food mixed with sedatives, but it will be confirmed only after forensic reports."
The police has recorded statements of neighbours. Some of them told the police that they saw Husnain sharpening a butcher’s knife. "Husnain used to sacrifice a goat on Id on behalf of his family. When we questioned him about the knife, he did not reply and simply smiled," a neighbour told the police.
Joint CP Dhumbre said that Husnain’s cellphone and laptop have been seized to get clues about the murders.
"Prima facie evidence suggests that the accused bolted all the doors of the house and murdered his family with a knife while they were asleep. The accused then hanged himself after killing his family members. There were three rooms in the house. While he was in a room with his wife and two daughters on the first floor, his parents and sisters were in separate rooms on the ground floor," he said.
While property dispute is suspected to be the reason behind the murders, the police officer said at this stage the motive could not be stated with certainty.
The deceased have been identified as Zabin Husnain Warerkar (28, wife of Husnain), Mushadshera Husnain Warerkar (6) and Umera Husnain Warerkar (3 months, both his daughters), Anwar Warerkar (55, father), Azgadi Anwar Warerkar (50, mother), Rabina Shaukat Khan (35), Batul Anwar Warerkar (30), Maria Irfan Fakki (28, all three sisters). The deceased also include children of the three sisters — Anas Shaukat Khan (12), Sabiya Shaukat Khan (16), Ali Hasan Shaukat Khan (5), Umer Irfan Fakki (7), Yusuf Irfan Fakki (4) and Asriya Sojef Burmal (5 months), they said.
Thane civil surgeon Dr B.C. Kempi Patil carried out post-mortem of bodies and some were also sent to the civic-run Chhatrapati Shivaji Hospital to speed up the autopsy process.