There are many types of horror. Renuka Shinde and Seema Gavit half-sisters, are a perfect example of how cruel people can become in their duel. The two serial killer sisters could be just another face in the crowd.
On August 31, 2006 Seema and her sister Renuka were sentenced to death for killing 5 children mostly babies between 1990 and 1996 in Pune, Kolhapur and Nashik.
How It All Started
Their mother Anjana is a local thief. A truck driver with whom she married in Pune formed illegal ties with her. Anjana gave birth to her first child (seema) in Pune. Soon after her birth the truck driver left them then She married former soldier Mohan Gavit. Anjana gave birth to her second daughter (renuka) . In response to the police harassing him regularly for Anjana’s crime he moved away with a woman named Pratibha and settled in Nashik.
They had two daughters. Despite their limited finances, Anjana and two sisters went to Nashik in search of Mohan. When she realized that she couldn’t reunite with Mohan the 3 turned to pickpocketing to survive. They returned to Pune in 1990 in order to avoid being discovered by the authorities.
They abducted Children’s to cover their criminal activities include Seema, Renuka their mother Anjana and Renuka’s husband Kiran Shinde. Renuka was first arrested for pickpocketing at the Chatursinghi temple in Pune in 1990. Ashish her first husband was present. She used him to convince the crowd that a mother with a child couldn’t possibly be a thief. After realizing that a child could save them from dangerous circumstances the gang began kidnapping children as a front. If children were a problem they would be killed.
During festivals especially in crowded places the sisters were told to move in pairs. They abducted a child to act as a shield. One remained with it and the other fled. If anyone questioned her she would claim innocence since she was carrying a child. “They kidnapped kids from Nashik, Mumbai, Kolhapur, and Pune.” A child will be kept at the family’s home in Pune. If they didn’t get the ransom they would be killed. They kidnapped 13 children between the ages of 1 and 9. According to them they killed 9 children’s.
Churches, train stations, markets, bus stops they hunted anywhere there was traffic. The getaway car a “Fiat” was driven by Kiran Shinde. Most of the stolen children came from low-income families. It may have been that the parents wanted to file a complaint but were denied by police authorities. The kidnapping reports didn’t begin to arrive until it was too late.
Sisters Gruesome Acts Against Children's
The first kidnapping victim was Santosh the 1 year old son of a beggar woman. He was used as a cover up. When one of the sister’s is caught pickpocketing the one who is holding the child will throw him to the ground. Whenever a child is hurt he or she will cry which draws attention of the crowd or if the child became a burden or a bother they would be mercilessly murdered. Santosh was injured when he was thrown to the ground. After the injuries became infected he began screaming uncontrollably. An investigation found that Anjanabai beat Santosh repeatedly with an iron rod to silence him the sisters stand their and saw their mother’s heinous crime while eating vada pav.
Seema abandoned Swapnil when he was 7 months old because he was screaming constantly. In another case they hanged a 2-year-old boy upside down and smashed his skull against a wall. The sisters watched a movie at Alka Talkies in Kolhapur while eating bhel puri with the bag between their feet after the body of one child was cut up and placed into a bag for disposal.
In crowded areas they would carry the children in their arms so they wouldn’t be seen as they grabbed purses. The children were killed when they were too old to be taken or cried in public and attracted suspicion.
As a result of one of these children’s cries a fight broke out outside a temple in Kolhapur and the sisters threw him down to distract the public. As they grabbed the opportunity to flee. The sisters managed to pick up the severely injured child and carry him along. According to authorities when they reached home Anjanabai murdered him by smashing his skull against a pole.
Another victim was a 3-year-old who was repeatedly bashed against a wall after he was seen speaking to passersby about his parents. Other victims included two 18-month-olds and a two-year-old.
How Its All Ends
Nevertheless the end was near. In October 1996 the sisters tried to kidnap Mohan’s second daughter but were caught. After his second wife’s eldest daughter went missing she filed a complaint against them and their mother. They uncovered evidence that pointed to many killings during their interrogation of the three about the missing girl. Their investigation was turned over to the CID.
The investigation focused on Kiran Shinde Renuka’s husband the weakest link in the chain who turned against them and handed over all information. “All of the accusations were rejected by the sisters who claimed they were falsely accused.
Virdya Kulkarni a key witness against the sisters who lived next door to them in Nashik when they kidnapped Kranti in 1996 claims, “I saw them beating Kranti every day from my window.” I had plenty to say.”
As he recalls the past the math’s teacher is in shock. I have a daughter who used to play with Renuka’s kids and even went to the market with Anjana on numerous occasions. God protected my daughter. We didn’t know of her background until the news of the attack came in the newspapers. We don’t know who to trust these days.”
Although the mother died shortly after her arrest from illness the other two were found guilty of murdering five children and abducting a total of 13 children. The sisters filed a mercy petition in 2014 which was denied by the President of India. The sisters were held in separate prisons.