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    Feb 2010


    Default “Sulakshana doesn't know our sister is missing,” Vijeta Pandit breaks down

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    Former actress and wife of music composer Aadesh Shrivastav, Vijeta Pundit is sickened and distraught with worry about her sister Sandhya Singh who has gone missing since 13 December.

    Vijeta whose fear is that her sister was killed for her jewellery just as she was about to enter the bank, is baffled that the Mumbai police have not been able to gather any information on the missing lady’s whereabouts.

    Crazed with worry Vijeta speaks in sobbing stream of emotions. “What has happened to my sister? We don’t know! She’s happily married and she is the prettiest among us sisters. She’s two years older than me. Unlike Sulakshana Didi and me she never wanted to be part of the cinema industry. She’s happy being a housewife. The police seem clueless. For the 13 days I’ve been traveling back and forth from my home to the police station to my sister’s place in Vashi. So far we’ve hit only a dead-end. My sister was so happy. Her husband was a commissioner in the excise department and she had two lovely children whom she was extremely fond of.”

    Then Vijeta corrects herself. “Why am I speaking of her in the past tense? We’re all praying she would return. Sandhya’s one weakness is jewellery. She is too tooooo attached to jewellery and wears tons of it. She has lots of her husband’s ancestral ornaments and she loves to flash them around. I always warn her not to travel with so much jewellery. Whenever she comes home I make her take off all the jewellery and tie it up in a handkerchief, put it her purse before she travels back home to Vashi.”

    Vijeta and the missing sister Sandhya’s sister Sulakshana who stays with Vijeyta and Aadesh and who is psychologically over-sensitive has not been informed about the family trauma.

    Sobs Vijeta, “If Sulakshana Didi comes to know that our sister is missing, she wouldn’t be able to take it. She wouldn’t be able to bear the shock. I don’t allow anyone to go into her room since Sandhya Didi went missing. If someone accidently blurts out the truth Sulakshana Didi will break down completely. Sulakshana Didi is like a pillar of strength in our house. Whatever my sisters and brothers have achieved is because of Sulakshana Didi.”

    Breaking down in optimistic despair Vijeta says, “I don’t think she’s dead. I think she’s there somewhere. They (the alleged kidnappers) have taken her jewellery and will let her go soon. Please pray that is what happens....Could people have really hurt my sister for her jewels? Every day I am with the crime-branch officers. We roam around in a jeep looking crazily for my sister. Every day our hope diminishes.”

    For Vijeta the current trauma is a reminder of her predicament last year when her husband Aadesh Shrivastav had fallen ill.

    “When Aadesh was ill I was in and out of Jaslok hospital every day. Now I am in and out of the police station for my sister every single day. I’ve no time for my husband and my sons. I don’t know what I’ve done to deserve this. It’s just tears and tears all the way. I’ve only suffered pain and stress and sorrow in recent times. I’ve forgotten my husband and children. I am only focusing on getting my sister back. I am not able to sleep. I am filled with horrible thoughts,” Vijeta breaks down and sobs inconsolably.

    Vijeta and the family are helpless as the cops seem clueless. “We know so many powerful officers and yet we can’t find a woman who has gone missing in broad daylight. Can you imagine what ordinary people go through when family members go missing? The police are saying this is not a random crime. It was a carefully-planned kidnapping. And look at Sandhya’s misfortune: on the day she disappeared from the bank the CCTVs in the bank were switched off. Nonetheless it’s strange that a woman with so jewellery vanished from the city of Mumbai and no one has a clue of her whereabouts. And look at the irony. Sandhya’s brother-in-law is a commissioner of police! In fact her husband’s family is replete with senior government officers. We’re hoping the criminals would take the jewellery and release my sister....Lekin kyon aisa karega? She’s the kind of woman who proudly throws her husband and his family’s power into people’s faces. She must have told her kidnappers how powerful her husband is. And they must have ...done the worst.”



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