22-Year-Old Man Arrested for Attacking Delhi Scribe Aparna Kalra

Aparna Kalra has sustained severe injuries to her brain and skull, her uncle said.

With the arrest of a 22-year-old man, said to be infatuated with journalist Aparna Kalra, 45, Delhi Police on Friday claimed to have solved the case of a brutal attack on her at a park in northwest Delhi.

The accused, Sanjay, is a school dropout. He used to work in a nail polish factory, police said, adding that he had five siblings and his father owned a 'chaat' cart.

He was arrested on Friday from the Sawan Park slums.

The accused was identified after questioning various people, including the regular visitors to the park, said DCP (Northwest) Milind Mahadeo Dumbere.

“He confessed that he had seen Kalra at the park around 8-10 times and was infatuated with her. He accosted Kalra to talk to him, with a view to befriend her, but in vain. In a fit of rage, he attacked her with a stone,” said another officer.

Commissioner of Police, Delhi congratulated the team for solving the case.

Sources claimed that the accused had consumed liquor before coming to the park on that day with an intention to sexually assault her.

The Delhi-based journalist, who was brutally attacked on Wednesday, during an evening walk in her neighbourhood park in Ashok Vihar, is now stable, conscious and talking, Hindustan Times reported.

Kalra was attacked during her routine walk to Picnic Hut – a popular park in the area which is usually crowded with walkers around that time.

On Wednesday, the scribe's family received a call around 7.30 pm from Deep Chand Hospital from the police, saying that she had been brought to the hospital in an injured condition. She suffered frontal lobe fractures to her skull.

On reaching the hospital, the family found her unconscious, severely bleeding from the head and nose. She regained consciousness, just long enough to tell police that she had been attacked by two people.

No Sexual Assault

Police were looking at drug addicts as possible assailants as the DDA park is said to be a hotbed for local criminals and drug addicts.

Senior InvestigatorBut drug addicts in this area are notorious for attacking people even for as little as Rs 50. It is possible that the attacker first wanted to knock the woman unconscious before searching her for cash and mobile phone.

“Doctors have confirmed there was no sexual assault on the woman, but we are probing if she was attacked for hitting out at any advances by unwanted elements in the park,” said the officer.

Personal enmity was being probed as a reason for the attack.

Attempt to Murder Case Registered

Milind Dumbre, DCP (northwest) said that Kalra was found crying, asking passersby to help her get home.

She told passersby that someone tried to drag her into the bushes after gagging her and hitting her on her head. She was initially taken to Deep Chand Hospital. But after seeing the seriousness of her injuries, she was referred to Fortis Hospital. She regained consciousness for a few minutes late on Wednesday night. Police recorded her statement, but she fell unconscious soon after.

An attempt to murder case has been registered on the basis of a PCR call in the Bharat Nagar police station.

Police SourcesAfter registering an FIR, police started their investigation and recorded the statement of family members. They initially suspected that Kalra was attacked by people who possibly tried to snatch her mobile phone, but police later found that she had left her phone at home.

Vital Stats Stable Post Cranial Surgery

She was referred to Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, where she underwent a craniectomy (cranial surgery) on Thursday night. A portion of her skull was removed to release pressure on her brain.

“Her condition is stable. She will continue to be under observation for the next two days. Her recovery will depend on how she reacts to the treatment and surgery,” a source said.

A CT-scan of her brain was conducted and a blood clot was found in her brain. Her vital parameters, however, such as the blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature and respiratory rate were all found to be stable.

So far, no eyewitnesses have come forward to share details about the attack and her family members are also clueless about any possible motive, police said.

The journalist has been employed with leading dailies, and was freelancing for the last year or so.

(With inputs from PTI)

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