August 29, 2014

Slain businessman cremated

Rajendra Singh’s casket on a truck as it was being transported to his business place

Rajendra Singh’s casket on a truck as it was being transported to his business place

as police continue probe 

BY BHISHAM MOHAMED

As the body of Rajendra Sunil Singh, former proprietor of Sunil’s Auto Spares was being cremated on Sunday, investigators were busy interrogating other suspects whom they believe play an integral role in his killing.

Pall bearers carried the casket of slain businessman  Rajendra Singh

Pall bearers carried the casket of slain businessman
Rajendra Singh

So far, three persons have reportedly confessed to the kidnapping and murder of the businessman, but the police are also looking for two others, one of whom might have sold a car to the businessman a few nights before his kidnapping. The man is reportedly from Plaisance, East Coast Demerara (ECD).

Guyana Times also understands that a prominent figure at Enmore, ECD is being fingered in connection with the man’s kidnapping and is believed to be the second mastermind. A police source told this publication that the three men who confessed to the killing are expected to be charged shortly.

The source also refuted claims by Stabroek News which accused the police of not going to the house where Singh was kept by his abductors. He said as soon as the police got information about the house, they conducted a search, but Singh was not found there.

Close relatives and friend at the viewing of Singh’s body at his home on Sunday

Close relatives and friend at the viewing of Singh’s body at his home on Sunday

The source added that police also searched several houses in proximity of Goedverwagting, ECD, but came up empty-handed.

This was confirmed by a resident in the area, who told Guyana Times that his house was searched while his teenage daughter was at home. He thought that while the police are conducting their duties, they need to more responsible.

James Whyte related that after the search, police returned the following morning and again ransacked his house. It was after the policemen left, he was told of the kidnapping incident. When asked if he had seen any suspicious movements in the area, he responded in the negative, but was more concern with the manner in which the police raided his home.

Rajendra Singh

Rajendra Singh

Meanwhile, at the businessman’s funeral on Sunday, his wife told Guyana Times that ever since her husband’s death, she has been concentrating on his funeral arrangements and did not check with the police at any time.

The woman said she is cognisant that the police are making some headway in the case and is looking for answers as to the real motive behind the kidnapping.

At the funeral, several small groups of people were in their corners talking about the man’s death and what they thought might have been the motive.

The businessman’s body lay in a white casket as family members stood around in tears.

His mother, who was sitting on a chair, wept uncontrollably. “Why it had to be you… why… they tek you away and now you gone and left me… why they had to tek you away… why…” the grieving mother cried.

The man’s eldest son, who returned from the U.S. for the funeral, was seen standing with other relatives with a perplexed look on his face. Singh’s close relatives were also seen and so were several police ranks in plainclothes.

After the viewing at the man’s house in Enmore for close family and associates, his casket was lifted onto a truck and whisked off.

On their way to the man’s business place for the funeral service, the entourage stopped at several of his other businesses. Finally, at his Lot 15 Foulis, East Coast Demerara home, the final funeral service was held.

A cousin of the dead man told Guyana Times that his family is still in shock at the way he was killed.

“If they de kill he the same time when they collect he on the night, we would a feel it yea, but this is unbearable… they kidnapped he, then torture he and oh man, they nah had to kill he in that way.”

Doubts

The relative recalled that after they found Singh’s body on Friday, he rushed to the La Repentir Cemetery with some doubts in his mind, but as he got close to the body, his worst fears were confirmed.

At that time, he said he was too distraught to talk, but now that he is much better, he is asking the police to find his cousin’s killers.

The slain businessman’s teenage son was not seen and is believed to be in protection since he was reportedly the main target in the kidnapping. Despite the man’s death, the investigations continue and three persons have since confessed to the killing on Friday evening. They have since revealed the identities of their accomplices to the police, who have launched a manhunt to apprehend them.

Guyana Times was told that one of the two masterminds behind the kidnapping and killing was apprehended, while the other is still on the run. It is believed that two men would have orchestrated the entire incident, and in turn, they would have contracted three others to execute the plan.

Possible motive

The kidnapping reportedly stemmed from the sale of several of the businessman’s properties, which led to greed. It is believed that the men were business associates and would frequent Singh’s house, thus, they were well aware of his business deals.

The kidnapping was an attempt to extort money from the businessman, but the plan of the perpetrators failed. On the night in question, their main target was reportedly Singh’s teenage son whom they thought was in the car with him.  Soon after the car sped away from the scene with Singh inside, the kidnappers contacted Singh’s wife, demanding $50 million for his safe return since they were aware that he had the money at home.

After they realised the police had gotten involved in the matter, they reportedly lowered the ransom to $25 million. After three days and their demands were not met, the suspects reportedly shot the businessman twice to the head aback the La Repentir Cemetery, Georgetown. Singh was cremated at the Good Hope, ECD crematorium.

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