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The Claim (III)

Part 3       

“Have you gone crazy, Radha?” Mr. Iyer, her editor shouted at her.

“No, Sir, I think this is the only way of bringing out the truth.”

“How can you judge that?”

“I am no judge of anything. I go by my instincts.”

As usual, after a bit of convincing, Mr. Iyer calmed down and thoughtfully said, “Are you sure about what you are doing?”

“Yes, Sir. Please trust me. If it’s not true, we could later apologize for the mistake.”

 

The next day, The True Story held the following story on the front page, with bold headings.

Lover Commits Suicide

Mumbai, June 11: The dead body of a man agd around 20 was found yesterday on Juhu beach. It was found that the man was Chandu, the live-in servant of the Voras living in Sea View Apartments, Andheri. He had committed suicide, since a note was found on his person.

Sources said that Chandu had an affair going with the Vora’s teenage daughter, Priya. The girl is now studying in the Film Institute of Pune apparently exiled for puppy love affair.

Just a couple of days before the incident, a strange robbery took place at the Vora residence. The front door latch was screwed open with the lock and jewelry and cash worth 3 lakhs were gone. Mr. Vora suspects Chandu to be the thief. If Chandu is the thief then why did he commit suicide? Are there any others connected to the crime? Where are the stolen items? The police are vigilantly keeping an eye on every jeweler notorious for buying stolen items in the city.

At this stage, it is not known what connection does the Vora’s daughter has with both the incidents. At the time of going to press, Priya was unavailable for comment.

 

“How dare you publish this news?” threatened the man. He had entered the office of The True Story and had come to the place she was sitting in. It was the same person, Radha had seen the previous day accompanying Mrs. Vora.

“Oh, who are you?”

“I am the girl’s father.”

“Oh. Mr. Vora? Did you find your lost items?”

“that is none of your business. I will file a defamation case against you.”

“With the insurance money you collected for the jewelry, I suppose,” she looked at him innocently. Radha had seen the couple enter an insurance company office, the other day.

There was silence for a few seconds, after which the man left. He looked furious.

Radha decided to follow the man, leaving a message with her friend, Asha Bhat that if she did not call back every hour, she had to call her brother Kartik.

Once outside the building, Vora got into a waiting taxi, which took him to a small isolated cottage in Versova.

 

“Why don’t you understand, Keshav?” Radha spoke into her cell. “I tried to contact my brother, but he is not to be found. Look here, you will find the answer to both the cases in the cottage. If you are not coming, I am going alone,” with that she disconnected the call and placed her cell inside her handbag.

Radha was angry. Why was not Inspector Keshav trying to understand her logic? He seemed to be furious that she had brought out the news report on Chandu’s death, connecting it the the theft.

The man had not come out of the run-down cottage, so she decided to confront him. Her knock was answered by Mrs. Vora.

“Go away!” she exclaimed. “Enough of your fake sympathies!”

“Who’s that?” Mr. Vora came out. When he saw Radha, he smiled, a trifle viciously.

“Please come in, Miss Reporter. I will tell you what you want to know.”

Radha entered the dim lit cottage with the premonition of doom.

About Yashaswini K

Controversy is the second name of Yashaswini. She goes where something is amiss and picks up the threads to make a clear story out of it.

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