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Murder Milestone: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 | Creative Writing in English (Fiction & Poetry)

Murder Milestone: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery

Inspector Saralkar and PSI Motkar are back, this time putting together the pieces of a crime scene that played out sixteen years ago. But weeks before the culprit is to be hanged, he lets out a tiny detail that threatens to unravel the very basis of Saralkar’s police career, for this is the very case that won Saralkar a medal! As the police duo unofficially reopens a case gone cold, will they be able to unearth anything that makes them prove or disprove the serial killer’s claim? Was our diligent inspector not so careful all those years ago? More importantly, is there another serial killer on the loose; the one Saralkar had failed to catch in his first feted case?Inspector Saralkar and PSI Motkar are back, this time putting together the pieces of a crime scene that played out sixteen years ago. But weeks before the culprit is to be hanged, he lets out a tiny detail that threatens to unravel the very basis of Saralkar’s police career, for this is the very case that won Saralkar a medal! As the police duo unofficially reopens a case gone cold, will they be able to unearth anything that makes them prove or disprove the serial killer’s claim? Was our diligent inspector not so careful all those years ago? More importantly, is there another serial killer on the loose; the one Saralkar had failed to catch in his first feted case?

Full Title: Murder Milestone: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery

Author: Salil Desai
Publisher: Fingerprint! Publishing

Award Category: Creative Writing in English (Fiction & Poetry)
About the Book: 

“HAPPY HANGING!” Saralkar growled with all the spite in his system and stormed out of the cell.
Weeks before serial killer Dharmesh Solanki is to be executed, he wickedly burdens Senior Inspector Saralkar with a macabre secret Saralkar would’ve been better off not knowing.
Impelled to verify Solanki’s disturbing claim, Saralkar and PSI Motkar reopen the sixteen-year-old case, for which the senior inspector had won a police medal. And out tumble intriguing leads and shocking facts that had fallen through the cracks back then.
Worse, only a motley group of elusive characters might form the shaky bridge to the murky truth—a missing ex-constable, a gluttonous witness who had narrowly escaped being murdered by Solanki, Solanki’s biographer, the serial killer’s own son, and the daughter of one of his victims.
Meanwhile another dangerous murderer is busy prowling around for victims to notch up an impressive body count. In the midst of these crazy events, Saralkar’s marriage faces rough weather, while Motkar’s hands are full, investigating a trail of mysterious suicides.
As the duo struggle to cope, personal tragedy strikes Saralkar and a tip-off propels Motkar into confronting an astonishingly diabolical psychopath on his own.
Will Motkar prove up to the challenge? Will Saralkar recover his mojo in time? And will Saralkar and Motkar ever make sense of the complicated chain of murders and suicides and the dark secret of a despicable serial killer sentenced to death?


About the Author: 

Salil Desai is an author, columnist and film-maker based in Pune. Murder Milestone (2020) is the fourth book of his much-acclaimed Inspector Saralkar Mystery Series, on the heels of 3 and a Half Murders (2017), The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen (2015) and Killing Ashish Karve (2014). The Inspector Saralkar Mystery series has been optioned by Times Studio Originals (now Junglee Pictures) for adaptation into a web series. Salil’s other popular books are Murder on a Side Street (2011), Lost Libido and Other Gulp Fiction (2012), as well as The Sane Psychopath (2018), the screen rights of which have been picked up by Endemol India recently. Over the years, Salil’s books have received good reviews in The Hindu, New Indian Express, The Pioneer, Bangalore Mirror, DNA, First City, The Tribune, etc. His work has been praised by veteran authors Dr Shashi Tharoor, Shobhaa De and film-makers Sriram Raghavan and Sujoy Ghosh. An alumnus of Film & Television Institute of India (FTII), Salil also conducts intensive workshops in creative fiction writing, story and scenario design, screenplay writing and film-making at leading liberal arts institutions, media and communication colleges and other renowned organizations across India. As a newspaper columnist, over 400 articles, op-ed pieces, features and travelogues written by him have appeared in The Times of India, Indian Express, DNA, The Tribune, Reader’s Digest, Deccan Herald, The Hindu, etc. Salil was also one of the four international authors worldwide selected for the HALD International Writers’ Residency in Denmark, hosted by the Danish Centre for Writers & Translators in June 2016. For more info, visit www.salildesai.com.


Excerpt: 

Dharmesh Solanki had aged. The long years of incarceration had certainly taken a toll on his body. He looked frail and vulnerable—like any other harmless man with whom age had caught up. But bemused malice still played in his eyes, jostling with feral alertness. He had grown a huge, bushy moustache that dropped along both sides of his mouth and then curved up his jaws and cheek, thick and wide, to meet his sideburns.
“What do you think of it?” he asked, pulling at the luxuriant contours of his facial hair.
“Impressive,” Saralkar remarked, raising his eyebrows. “You remind me of a Chambal dacoit of yore.”


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