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Thane man arrested for strangulating former gay partner to death

THANE: Within hours of finding the body of a 56-year-old man at Dombivali in the district, the Thane police on Thursday made an arrest in the case, claiming to have solved the crime.

Praful Pawar (27), the accused, and the deceased Umesh Patil (56) were in a homosexual relationship, the police said.

Patil, who worked at a private firm in Navi Mumbai after retiring as a steno at the Mumbai sessions court, had gone missing from his house in Kopri area here two days ago.

His body was found stuffed in a bag left near the railway tracks at Dombivali on Thursday morning.

Inspector Rajkumar Kothmire of the Thane Crime Branch said that probe led the police to Praful Pawar.

Pawar and Patil met each other on local train six months ago and became friends; soon Patil, who was unmarried, started visiting Pawar at latter’s house in Dombivali and they had a homosexual relationship, the officer said.

When Pawar got married, he started avoiding Patil, he said, leading to souring of their relations.

On February 4, Patil visited Pawar when his wife was not at home, and they had a quarrel.

Pawar allegedly strangulated Patil and stuffed his body in a bag and dumped it in the bushes by the side of the railway tracks, the police officer said.

In 2013 a case of attempt to murder had been registered against Pawar, Kothmire said, adding that further probe was on.