If you need a recap click here to read Part 1
As they sat there without a clue, one of the duty policemen ran into the room, “Sir, we got hold of the bike and the owner. We are getting him in” Michael nodded his head. Nayak stood up as a boy walked into the room. The boy was visibly shaken and shabbily dressed. He was about 24 years old but looked a lot younger.
“Name?” Nayak asked.
“Manu Krishna, Sir”, his voice revealed the fear he held inside.
“Where are you from?” Nayak’s voice was firm.
“Sir, here only sir!”
“What do you do?”
“Sir, I work in a hotel – “ He was interrupted by a commotion in the lobby. Nayak walked out of the room to check what the issue was.
Michael continued the questioning – “Repeat, what did you say?”
“Sir, I work in a hotel, I’m a supplier and I also do deliveries, Sir”
Nayak walked in just in time. “Sir, it’s the owner of the Hotel!” he said pushing the man toward the table. Michael stood up. Adjusting his pants as he walked up to this man. “So, you are the owner?” and before the man could answer, Michael left a mark on his left cheek. The sound was so intense that Manu who was standing two feet away found himself jump to the corner of the room! “It took you so long for you to come here, Eh?”
The man was distraught and slowly coming back to his senses. “Sir, I… I… -“
“Don’t open your mouth. Sit down!” As the man slowly adjusted the chair, Michael barked “on the floor”. Michael now sat on the table with one leg on the ground and the other on the chair in front of him. He was in the mood!
He signaled Manu to come forward. “Is this your boss?” He pointed at the man sitting on the floor now with his head bowed down. Manu nodded. “Do you know why you are here, Manu?”
“No sir, these men just pulled me from my house this morning and brought me here”.
Michael turned to Nayak “Why dint you tell him, Nayak, that he is being arrested for murder?”
“Murder!! Sir”, the boy cried out, literally shaking now.
“Where were you on the night of the 19th?”.
“In the hotel sir, I was working as usual”.
“There were a few deliveries also that I made”.
Nayak continued with the questioning, “What time did you leave for the deliveries?”
“Sir, I didn’t do anything sir”, Manu begged.
“Answer my question Manu”.
Manu continued hesitantly “Sir around half past seven in the night”.
“And where did you deliver them”.
“Just a minute sir”, he frantically pulled out his phone and went through it, “Sir, 07:45 Gandhinagar; around 08:30 Goodwill Colony; and 09:30 Raja street”.
“What is that on your phone?”
“Sir, I make a note of the addresses here before delivery”. Nayak pulled the phone from his hand and went through it. He nodded back to Michael affirmatively.
“How did you get these orders?” Michael asked.
“Sir, Phone calls sir”.
“Nayak!” Michael’s face was indicating irritation again! Nayak quickly responded “Sir, the victim had no phone”.
Michael looked back at Manu “How did that guy call you, Manu, when he dint have a phone?”.
“Sir, which guy? Whoever it is I don’t know sir, the addresses are given to me by the hotel owner. He is the one who attends the calls”.
Nayak quickly pulled the owner of the hotel. “Sir, I don’t know sir, I can give you the phone numbers that I received the calls on”.
“Nayak, note down those numbers and trace that Call”
“It will be done Sir” Nayak pointed to another police officer to walk the owner of the hotel outside the office.
Michael looked back at Manu, “So did you deliver the food at Goodwill Colony?”.
“Tell me everything that happened there that night”.
“Sir, nothing happened sir”.
“Think, Manu, and explain in detail before I push you into jail”, Michael emphasized each word slowly.
“Sir, I swear sir, after I rang the bell, the guy had come out and taken the food. He brought out a two-thousand rupee note and I didn’t have enough change. He went inside and in about five minutes he came back with the change. That’s all Sir, I left”.
“Don’t lie to me”
“Sir, this is all that happened sir”.
“Was he alone?”
“I don’t know sir, but I didn’t see anyone else there”.
Michael was silent now, “Wait outside, Manu”, Nayak said.
When Manu was outside the office Nayak continued “Sir what he saying is the truth sir, the CCTV footage shows him entering the colony at 8:15 pm and he leaves at 8:43 pm. Sir moreover the postmortem report estimates the death to have occurred after 11 PM that night”.
“Nayak, then this is a dead end too! What the hell!! Don’t let that Manu go. Trace the phone number and get back to me.”
An hour later Nayak was back in the Inspector’s office. Michael looked up in anticipation from his desk but Nayak’s expression was not good news. “Sir, the call was made from a public booth not too far away from the house. He probably would have made it just before returning home that night!”
Michael’s hope and anticipation did not last long “Returning from where? Did you find that out?”
“Sir, we have nothing!”
Dejected Michael looked at the photographs on his table. “Sir, we can’t hold these people for any longer”.
“You know what to do”, Michael said without lifting up his eyes. Time slowly melted away. None of his questions had been answered. There were brick walls at every direction. He was afraid that the floor beneath his feet was disappearing. How would he give this man the justice he deserved? Is the killer going to strike again? Why was he killed? Why didn’t they find even a cell phone? and above all who is this guy? The sun was setting fast.
END OF PART 2
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