"she left the house with their three children."
Nearly two months after going missing, the bodies of an Indian mother and her three children were found hanging from a tree in a forest in Bhiwandi Taluka, Maharashtra.
They have been identified as Ranjana Bangari and her children Darshana, aged 12, Rohit, aged nine and Rohini, aged six.
The bodies were discovered on December 10, 2020, by some of the villagers.
A case of harassment and abetment to suicide was registered against the husband Sripath and his second wife Savita, however, they are yet to be arrested as they remain in JJ Hospital in Mumbai.
After identifying the bodies, Sripath and Savita attempted suicide by drinking pesticide.
A police officer explained that Sripath got married to Savita on October 16, 2020, without divorcing Ranjana first. He later brought his second wife home.
Thane Rural SP Vikram Deshmane said:
“Sripath was in an extramarital relationship with Savita, a distant relative of Ranjana, for more than a year.
“Ranjana knew about their affair, due to which the couple used to constantly fight.”
“Ranjana stayed with them for four days… but on October 20, following an altercation with Sripath, she left the house with their three children.”
Sripath and other villagers searched for the wife and three children. After an unsuccessful search, a missing persons’ complaint was registered at Padgha Police Station.
On December 10, 2020, some of the villagers went into the forest to collect wood when they detected a foul smell. As they continued into the forest, they found four decomposed bodies hanging from a tree.
SP Deshmane continued: “They informed other villagers, Sripath and Ranjana’s relatives, who went to the spot and identified the four with the help of their clothes.
“The bodies were decomposed to the extent that the torsos of Darshana and Rohini had fallen off.”
The bodies were found approximately two miles from where they lived. A case of accidental death was registered.
On December 11, 2020, police registered a case under sections 498 (A) (husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty), 306 (abetment to suicide and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code against Sripath and Savita.
The four bodies have been sent for postmortem examination.
Deputy SP Dilip Godbole said: “We have ascertained that it is a case of suicide.
“Now, we will be investigating how the woman killed her three children before hanging herself, whether she hanged them directly or poisoned them before hanging them.”
After identifying the Indian mother and her children, Sripath and Savita returned home and tried to commit suicide.
SP Godbole added: “One of their relatives found them with a bottle of pesticide next to them. They were rushed to Indira Gandhi hospital in Bhiwandi. Later on Friday, they were referred to JJ hospital in Mumbai. They are out of danger now.”