Fashion blogger pushed out of building with hands and legs tied, husband arrested

A Ghaziabad-based fashion blogger died after being pushed from a building in Agra, allegedly by her husband and family, police said, adding that the accused also tied her hands and legs before she to throw.

Police identified the victim as Ritika Singh, 30, and said they arrested her husband Aakash Gautam and two others.

Police said Gautam was angry with the woman staying with a friend at an apartment in Agra, and an argument between the two ended in the fatal incident.

“We have received reports that a woman has died after falling from the fourth floor of a building in the Nagla Mewati area. During the investigation, it was discovered that she was staying with a friend in the apartment. Her husband came with his family members on Friday and an argument broke out, and she was eventually kicked out of the building,” said Sudhir Kumar Singh, SSP Agra.

The woman had been living there for a year and a half, police said.

Ritika had a bachelor of science degree and had taken a course in social media and blogging, her family said. She launched a fashion, lifestyle and travel social media account two years ago and had amassed more than 44,000 followers on Instagram.

She met Aakash in 2014 and the two got married. His family alleged that he would live off his earnings as he had no fixed source of income.

“It was very clear that she would provide money for the family. She worked as a teacher at a school and maintained a social media profile on the side. Aakash’s whole family would put pressure on her,” said Utkarsh Singh, her brother.

Her family alleged that a few years after the marriage, she began to be physically abused and, in one case, was burned with a hot iron.

“She told us that Aakash’s family was violent. They were beating her and threatening her with dire consequences,” Utkarsh said.

Tired of the abuse, she left Firozabad and started living with her friend, whom she had met on Facebook, in a rented apartment.

Meanwhile, Aakash’s family continued to pressure her to return, her family said.

On Friday, Aakash and four other people, including two women, went to the women’s colony. To get in, they gave a different house number to the guard at the entrance to the company. Once they got to her house, there was an argument between the woman’s friend and Aakash, which escalated. Her friend was tied up and locked in the bathroom, police said. The accused then reportedly tied Ritika’s hands and legs and threw her off the balcony.

The residents of the settlement were shocked to see Ritika’s body tied up and bleeding on the ground. Her friend tried to shout and alert neighbors from the bathroom window, police said.

Police say two people are on the run.

“This is a brutal murder meant to send a signal. There must be justice for her,” Ritika’s brother said.

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