Indian community in mourning for Preethi Reddy; ex-boyfriend, a suspect, also dead

6 March 2019: Members of Sydney’s Indian community are in mourning following gruesome discovery of the body of Dr Preethi Reddy, a dentist who had been reported missing by her family since March 3. Police say the young woman was found stabbed “numerous times”.

In the meantime, Dr Harsh Narde, who authorities believe Ms Reddy stayed with on Sunday night has been killed in “a head-on collision on the New England Highway, Willow Tree”. A number of media outlets have named Dr Narde as the prime suspect in the murder of his ex-girlfriend.

A massive community response to NSW Police’s appeal for information helped authorities locate Dr Reddy’s car. The Volkswagen Golf was located yesterday evening parked on Strachan Street in Kingsford.

The devastating news has not only affected the Indian diaspora in Australia but has also, once again, highlighted domestic violence and violence against women.

The body of the Indian-origin dentist was found stuffed in a suitcase inside her grey Volkswagen. 

Detectives believe Dr Reddy’s ex-boyfriend deliberately caused the accident at Willow Tree by driving head-on into a fully-laden semi-trailer. While Dr Narde died at the scene, the driver of the truck somehow managed to exit before the semi-trailer was completely engulfed in fire, police said in an earlier press statement.   

As members of the Indian diaspora woke up to the shock news on Wednesday morning, heartfelt condolences began flooding social media platforms.

“Condolences to the family & friends of young Dr Preethi Reddy. I’m very sad to read about her horrific murder. I’m in contact with her family & friends. Please note Prayers that were scheduled today for the late Preethi ji have been cancelled,” read the Facebook status of Pallavi Sinha, Liberal Candidate for NSW Legislative Council.

“Heartbreaking and devastating News. We are shocked and in grief. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, who are going through unfathomable grief,” wrote another forerunner of the Australian Indian community, cardiologist Dr Yadu Singh.

Initial investigations by police had revealed that Preethi Reddy was “at a fast food restaurant on George Street near King Street about 2.15 am on Sunday”. She left the restaurant alone a short time later, walking south toward Market Street.

It is believed Ms Reddy attended a dental convention at St Leonards, Sydney’s north shore, over the weekend.

She spoke with her family about 11 am on Sunday when she reportedly mentioned about having “a late breakfast in Sydney” before heading home.

According to ABC News, Dr Narde’s parents back in India “had started looking at marriage proposals” for him.

Scheduled prayers for Preethi Reddy has been cancelled, according to the post by Pallavi Sinha.

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