A prominent Indian TV executive, Indrani Mukerjea was arrested on Wednesday August 26 in Mumbai and accused of murdering Sheena Bora, her daughter from an earlier marriage. Mukerjea, who is the wife of Peter Mukerjea, the former CEO of Star India, is accused of ordering her driver to kill Bora and of disposing of the body three years ago. Mukerjea and the driver were charged with kidnapping, murder and destroying the evidence.
According to Indian media, before to her death in 2012, Bora was dating Rahul, one of Peter Mukerjea's sons from his previous marriage, but that Peter Mukerjea did not know that Bora was his wife's child.
Rahul met with the police on Wednesday evening to give their statements. The police claims that Ms Bora was last seen alive in a car with her mother, along with her driver and former husband Sanjeev Khanna who was also arrested in Kolkata on Wednesday.
Sources in the Mumbai Police say that Ms Bora was first strangled and that her body was kept overnight in a car parked in Peter Mukerjea's garage. The next day the body was allegedly taken to a forest in Raigad on the outskirts of Mumbai where it was allegedly set on fire. Police sources say that the body was then recovered and dispensed of, and claims that it is Ms Mukerjea's driver who has helped establish that the corpse was Ms Bora's.
Ms Mukerjea's son Mikhail Bora told reporters that he believes his mother is guilty and will divulge her motive if she does not confess the truth soon. Peter and Indrani Mukerjea married in 2002 when he was head of the News Corp.-backed company and she worked in its human resources department.
While Bora's relationship may have been a cause for anxiety, media reports suggest the motive was more likely financial. After leaving Star in 2007, Indrani established INX and Peter managed its two specialty TV channels, 9X and Bollywood music channel 9XM. The Mukerjeas exited the company in 2009 with the news channel bought by Zee and the renamed rump acquired by Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek.
Indian media, supposedly quoting police sources, say that a Temasek audit of the company found that large sums of money had been extracted by the former owners and disbursed into the accounts of close relatives. A dispute over control of the money placed in Sheena Bora's accounts may have led to arguments with Indrani Mukerjea and Bora's death.