A 22-year-old woman is accused of murdering another young woman in order to stage her own death and hide from her family. Payal Bhati was arrested Thursday for murdering an innocent woman, disfiguring her face, and dressing the corpse in her own clothes.
The incident was reported in Noida, a city that’s located 10 miles from India’s national capital New Delhi. Greater Noida police arrested Bhati on Thursday after connecting the dots between her “suicide” and the disappearance of another woman in the city, the Times of India (TOI) reported.
Hema Chaudhary, a young woman who worked at a mall in the city went missing on Nov. 12. Her family members immediately filed a complaint at the Bisrakh police station after her disappearance.
On the same day, Bhati reportedly left a suicide note for her family at a house in Badhpura village, which is located about 12 miles from Noida.
According to the police, the accused and her boyfriend allegedly murdered Chaudhary, distorted her face, and planted a suicide note to stage Bhati’s death.
“Payal Bhati and her partner Ajay Thakur killed Chaudhary after befriending her as she had similar physical attributes to Bhati. They had also planted a purported suicide note in the name of Payal Bhati and made it appear like a case of suicide,” a police officer reportedly said, as per India Today.
Chaudhary’s body was handed over to Bhati’s relatives, who then cremated her and performed the last rites unaware that it was all for a complete stranger.
Before the gruesome murder, the two women did not know each other whatsoever, TOI reported. Bhati allegedly picked Chaudhary for her sinister plan due to their similar stature and build.
The accused and her boyfriend, Ajay Thakur abducted the victim and brought her to the Badhpura residence on Nov. 12. They allegedly slit Chaudhary’s wrists and poured hot oil on her face to ensure the body could not be easily identified.
“In the suicide note, she [Bhati] wrote that hot oil had fallen on her face in the kitchen and maimed her and she could not live with that,” a police officer told the outlet, adding that the culprits then dressed Chaudhary’s body in Bhati’s clothes.
Police said Bhati’s parents died by suicide about six months ago and she held her brother’s in-laws responsible for their deaths. The woman and her boyfriend reportedly wanted to exact revenge, which is why she needed people to believe that she was dead so she could plan it from anonymity.
After a series of investigations, authorities finally came to conclusion on Thursday when a police team found Bhati and Thakur living in a city about 30 miles away and even married each other after a ceremony at a local temple.
As of this writing, other information regarding the investigation has not been revealed.