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CBI arrests Peter Mukerjea in Sheena Bora murder case

MUMBAI: Adding a new twist to the high-profile Sheena Bora murder case, the CBI has arrested former Star India CEO and media honcho Peter Mukerjea on Thursday.

Peter was booked under IPC Section 201 (causing destruction of evidence, or giving false information to screen offender).

Mukerjea’s wife Indrani, the prime accused in the case, is already under judicial custody for the alleged murder of the 24-year-old Bora in April 2012. Bora was Indrani’s daughter from her first marriage.

Peter and IndraniDuring her questioning, Indrani apparently gave CBI enough indications that Peter knew of the murder.

Meanwhile, Peter’s advocate Mahesh Jethmalani has dropped out of the case.

Peter’s arrest has surprised many as he had feigned ignorance of the whereabouts of Bora. However, the bureau has claimed that he was aware of the murder before Indrani’s arrest in August this year by the Mumbai police.

Incidentally, the then Mumbai police commissioner Rakesh Maria was overseeing the investigations himself when he was transferred and the case was handed over to the CBI on 29 September.

Apart from Indrani, her second husband Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyamvar Rai are also under custody.

Meanwhile, media reports suggested that the Peter’s arrest was in view of alleged inconsistencies in his statement.

Indrani and Peter Mukerjea had married in 2002 when Peter was CEO at Star India and she was running her HR consultancy services. Later, when Peter quit Star India, the duo floated INX Media and launched three channels—9XM (Hindi music), 9X (Hindi general entertainment) and NewsX (English news). However, financial troubles forced the company to first sell NewsX to Indi Media (it was later acquired by ITV Group) and 9X to Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd.

Both Indrani and Peter stepped down as promoters of INX Media and INX News in 2009, giving the charge of INX Media (now 9X Media, which runs a clutch of music channels including 9XM) to its investors New Silk Route.