Indian man arrested for murder in a plot to fake own death

An Indian man who tried to fake his death by murdering a builder and passing the body off as his own has been arrested, police said on Monday.

He did it to avoid being tried for another alleged murder, they added — Sudesh Kumar was charged with but not convicted of the 2018 killing of his daughter who had eloped.

Kumar was released last year as authorities tried to prevent coronavirus outbreaks by decongesting overcrowded prisons.

Police last month found a body in Ghaziabad, on the outskirts of the capital New Delhi, wearing Kumar’s clothes and carrying his ID card.

“The body was partially burnt and its face was beyond recognition,” police superintendent Iraj Raja told AFP.

“We traced it back to [Kumar’s] home and got his wife to identify the body. She promptly identified it as her husband’s body. However, we were not convinced.”

Police got a tip-off that Kumar was still alive and caught him outside his home on Friday.

“Upon being interrogated, he spilled the beans,” Raja said.

Kumar had befriended a mason and invited him to his house on the pretext of doing some repair work, giving him a set of clothes to wear and plying him with alcohol before beating him to death.

Raja said both Kumar and his wife have been charged with murder.