SINGAPORE - A forklift driver charged with the murder of a beautician whose decapitated body was found floating in Whampoa River was remanded for psychiatric assessment on Friday.
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Last week, a forklift driver was charged with the murder of Ms Jasvinder Kaur, the 33-year-old beautician whose decapitated body was found floating in Whampoa River recently.
Gursharan Singh, 25, is accused of murdering Ms Kaur in a residence along Balestier Road, "together with one other unknown male person", according to court documents.
The offence, which carries the death penalty, was read to Singh in English. The Indian national, here on a Special Pass, was arrested earlier this month at his Sims Avenue workplace. He was ordered to be remanded for a week for police investigations.
The police said he is a friend of the victim's senior logistics coordinator husband, Mr Harvinder Singh, 33, who skipped town half an hour before his wife's body was found.
Ms Kaur's body was wrapped in a trash bag when it was spotted floating in the waterway between McNair Road and St George's Road. Besides her still-missing head and hands, her arms had also been apparently mutilated.
The couple are also Indian nationals. The husband had arrived in February on an Employment Pass, while his wife came in September on a Dependant's Pass.
Police are looking for him to assist in investigations. He had left the country by bus via the Woodlands Checkpoint, and it is not known if he is still in Malaysia.
The police said last week that they have "sought the assistance of our counterparts in the neighbouring countries to trace his whereabouts".
The couple are said to have lived in the unit where Ms Kaur was believed to have been murdered.
A 27-year-old neighbour who gave his name only as Mr Zhang said they were friendly and mild-mannered, and that Ms Kaur would always prepare breakfast for her husband.
But another neighbour, Mr Frankie Chai, 24, who works as a chef, said he heard a 10-minute argument "a few days before the body was found".
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Couple kept to themselves
The couple kept to themselves and were well mannered, save for an argument or two.
That was how neighbours described Madam Jasvinder Kaur and her husband, Mr Harvinder Singh, both 33.
According to court documents, the murder happened between 10pm on Dec 10 and 7.33am on Dec 12 at 228A, Balestier Road, a three-storey shophouse. There are 14 rooms in the shophouse, each about half the size of an HDB room.
Neighbours said the couple, who moved in barely two weeks before the murder, were the only Indian nationals living there.
Mr Chai, who has been living there for a year, said he had seen the couple but never interacted with them.
The cook described Madam Kaur as slim and fair, while her husband has a big build.
The Chinese national said in Mandarin: "They didn't seem to be on good terms. I saw them cooking their own food separately in the shared kitchen."
Mr Chai said he had heard the couple quarrelling on another night.
"I can't remember when exactly, but they were screaming and shouting in a foreign language for about 10 minutes," he said.
"I didn't check what was happening."
Another neighbour who wanted to be known only as Mr Zhang said the Indian couple kept to themselves.
The 27-year-old, who works in the retail industry, said he had seen Madam Kaur make breakfast for her husband at 6am, and did not suspect any problems in their marriage.
None of the occupants knew about Madam Kaur's death until they read about it in the newspapers.
Mr Zhang, who was shocked when he found out, said: "On Wednesday, the police were here to investigate. They brought an Indian man to the couple's room that night."
Another Chinese national in his 20s, who declined to be named, said: "Even though there are only so many of us living on the same floor, we rarely see each other due to our different schedules.
"Some of us have to work at night, and in the day we are catching up on our sleep."
Retracing his steps
Last week, the police retraced the route that Singh allegedly took to dispose of Madam Kaur's body.
The forklift driver was charged in court last Friday with murdering Madam Kaur, together with one unknown male person.
The retracing, which the police did with Singh, was done in three parts.
It started from the three-storey shophouse at 228A, Balestier Road, where Madam Kaur lived.
He then led the police to the overhead bridge next to Hong Wen School.
The New Paper understands that Singh allegedly used the overhead bridge to get to the Whampoa River, where Madam Kaur's decapitated body was found.
His head hung low as he walked from one location to another.
When questioned by the Criminal Investigation Department officer about the case, the Indian national seemed to be calm, replying in short sentences.
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