Aarushi murder: The curious case of the 'missing' golf club

Editor's note: Firstpost is running a series on the bizarre contradictions in official investigations into the Aarushi-Hemraj double murder case that has gripped the nation since 2008. The contradictions we highlight are based entirely on the CBI’s own reports, and applications submitted to the special CBI court during the course of the investigation. Today we look at how the second CBI crime scene report uses circumstantial evidence to disregard the findings of a 7-member medical team in the immediate aftermath of the murder. Read the first and second story in the series here and here.

About month after a second CBI team took over the Aarushi-Hemraj murder investigation, Rajesh Talwar’s golf set was seized for forensic testing. The seizure memo is dated 30 October 2009. The set comprising three woods (engraved with numbers 3, 4, 5) eight iron clubs (numbered 3,4,5,6,7,8,9) and one iron putter was duly sent to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory.

After reaching the CFSL, the golf set parcel remained untouched for five months. It was finally opened on 15 April 2010 and three months later (13 July 2010), the CFSL sent its report to the CBI.

In December that year, the CBI caught everyone by surprise when they filed a report in the special CBI court seeking to close the two-and-a-half year old double-murder case for want of evidence to link the perpetrators to the murders.

About month after a second CBI team took over the Aarushi-Hemraj murder investigation, Rajesh Talwar’s golf set was seized for forensic testing. AFP

In the closure report, the CBI zeroed in on a certain ‘the golf club No 5’ as the murder weapon that killed Aarushi and Hemraj. The CBI went on to explain why its ‘golf club theory’ was bang on in the closure report. The report said that “two of the golf clubs from golf set handed over by Rajesh Talwar were cleaner than the other golf clubs of the set.”

This, incidentally, is where the extraordinary theory begins to unravel.

For the record, the CBI has made no secret that “no biological fluid or DNA could be recovered from the golf clubs handed over by Rajesh Talwar”.

As part of the build-up to its theory, the CBI in the closure report says that Rajesh used two golf clubs when he played and these he kept in his car. And these were the two golf clubs that had been left in Hemraj’s room when the car had to be serviced a few days earlier.

Curiously, in the photographs that were taken by the forensic team after the CBI took over the case from the Uttar Pradesh Police two weeks after the murders, only one golf club was visible. And according to the CBI, Rajesh Talwar, who at that time was in custody, had no explanation as to where the missing golf club was.

This is where the closure report and its theory on the golf club attempt to get really ‘scientific’. “The dimensions of the striking surface of the golf club bearing No 5 were identical to the dimensions of the injury on the heads of victim Aarushi and Hemraj. The expert also pointed out that golf clubs bearing No 3 & 5 appeared to have been thoroughly cleaned so much so that they were visibly distinct from the other golf clubs of the set. (The implication here being that these have been thoroughly washed to rid it of blood stains)

Only, that is not what the CFSL said in its report on the golf clubs.

According to the July 2010 CFSL report, the reference to numbers ‘3’ and ‘5’ in the context of being more clean than the others was not to numbers on the golf club but to Exhibit 3 and Exhibit 5.

The CFSL report on examination of golf clubs – three wooden and eight iron clubs – found that the soil found on golf clubs “marked as Exhibits 3 and 5” was negligible in comparison to that found on the others. Exhibit 3 comprised a wooden golf club with marking 5 and Exhibit 5 was an iron golf club with marking 4.

Therefore, according to the CFSL report, it is a wooden golf club No5 and an iron golf club No 4 (and not golf club No 3 as claimed by the CBI in the closure report) that appear to be cleaner than the rest in the set.

Alright. So there is a golf club number 5 that is cleaner and that merits investigation.

And so it must be this golf club — the wooden golf club marked No 5 (Exhibit 3) which the CFSL has certified as having less soil on it than the others — that was used in committing in the crime. It follows then that it must be this very golf club that was missing from the photograph of Hemraj’s room taken by the forensic team two weeks after the murder.

Besides, as the CBI states in the closure report, “Ajay Chadha (a family friend of the Talwars’) confirmed that he and Nupur Talwar had found one golf stick in the loft of the residence of Dr Talwar near the room of Aarushi…”

But what the closure reports forgets to mention is that the golf club found in the loft was an iron golf club. Recall that Rajesh’s golf set had two No 5 golf clubs– one wooden and one iron. And CFSL makes it abundantly clear that it was a wooden golf club with Number 5 that was cleaner.

The CBI will need to explain this inconsistency.

The CBI's purported theory that the golf club which was used to murder Aarushi and Hemraj was missing because it was hidden and recovered only after it was cleaned is contradicted by the findings of its own lab reports.

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Updated Date: Jan 19, 2012 11:36:08 IST

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