|Fifty-six phone calls and 20,566 seconds of conversation. These are the numbers that nailed scriptwriter Rekkha Modi (28) and co-accused Rashmikant Kapadia (51) for allegedly threatening TV actress Smriti 'Tulsi' Irani. |
According to the Oshiwara police, the calls were made by Modi to Kapadia between March 7 and March 17.
They say that while Modi has insisted to the press that she's innocent, she has in fact confessed to her crime and even apologised for it during police interrogation on March 25.
Irani received six threatening messages on her mobile phone voicemail from March 7 to March 15.
Some of the calls Irani received
• March 15 (call made from a PCO near Andheri railway station): Aapka shooting paanch baje hai. Pehla scene Ganga (a character in the serial) ke saath hai. Again you are talking to her. He does not like it. This is an order.
• March 17 (call made from a PCO at Goregaon): Bahut naatak kiya. Tere bachche bhi jaate hain na school mein. Dekhta hoon. Itna bola toh bhi police complaint karti hai!
• March 18 (call made from a PCO at Dongri): Bahut ho gaya, bahut ho gaya. Abhi chhaan-bin bandh karo.
'Modi's odd behaviour aroused our suspicions'|
Oshiwara cops say that Rekkha Modi confessed to threatening Smriti Irani
Eight days after actress Smriti Irani received the first threatening phone call, she filed a police complaint.
Two days later, on March 17, a team visited Balaji House in Goregaon where Irani was shooting. From then on, say the police, the trail warmed up.
"We found the accused, Rekkha Modi at the shooting as well and her behaviour seemed odd. She was constantly talking on her cell phone, while we were there," said investigating officer Vasant Pingle.
Then, when the cops had a confidential meeting with Irani, which went on for about two hours, Modi sat outside the room for the whole time. This aroused our suspicion and we kept an eye on her thereafter," added Pingle.
The next day, on March 18, Modi attended a meeting at the T-Series office in Andheri with Smriti. After the meeting, Modi went to Balaji House in Goregaon and then headed home to Chincholi Bunder, Malad.
On her way, Modi stopped at a PCO and made a call. The moment Modi left the PCO, constable Sunil Kasbe, who was trailing her, redialled the number and Kapadia came on the line.
A panicky Kapadia then called Modi. Thirty minutes later, at about 10 pm, Modi called Smriti and told her that cops were "unnecessarily following her". Modi then explained that she had called her estate agent from the PCO because her mobile was not working.
Cops say that this call finally tilted the needle of suspicion towards Modi.
Says Pingle, "Why did Modi have to give an explanation to Smriti about making a call from a PCO? More importantly, her house was just a couple of minutes away from the PCO, and she could've easily called Irani from her home, if her mobile was not working."
The police then checked Modi's mobile phone records, which led them to Kapadia.
The police recorded his statement on March 22 and Kapadia told the police that he was an estate agent and also worked as a junior artist in TV serials. He said that though he knew Modi, he had spoken to her only once, last month.
Then on March 24, the police called Modi for interrogation for the first time, where she corroborated Kapadia's statement. The same day, police called Kapadia once again and confronted him with Modi's mobile phone records.
After seeing the records, Kapadia spilled the beans and admitted to making calls to Irani. He also told the police that Modi had provoked him to make those calls. "We always believed it to be an inside job as the caller had details of the actress's shooting schedule," said Pingle.
The next day, Modi was confronted with Kapadia's statement and she finally admitted her involvement in the case.
According to the police, Modi wanted to settle scores with the executive producer of Kyunki…, Shadab Khan and associate creative head Razia Rizvi. Shadab had once scolded Modi in front of the entire crew for refusing work given to her by Rizvi.
Kapadia had worked as a judge in one of the episodes, but was replaced after only a day. Modi told him that he was removed because of Irani.
Thereafter, she convinced Kapadia to make the calls. She also told him to speak like a Muslim, while making the calls, so that she would suspect Shadab and Rizvi.
So, Kapadia would begin and end the voice messages to Irani with a pronounced salaam aaleikum.