This is the first picture of the family ripped apart by a devastating triple stabbing that left two children dead and their father battling for his life.
Nithin Kumar, 40 is in hospital under police guard with critical stab wounds after he allegedly stabbed to death his son, three and daughter, one, in what has been described as an ‘attempted murder-suicide.’
Shop worker Nithin is said to have ‘exploded’ during lockdown and stabbed them at the family flat above a shop at 5.30pm on Sunday after finishing his shift at work.
Neighbours told how his distraught wife Nisa ran into the street screaming from the couple’s tiny flat in Ilford, east London, following the brutal attack.
Reshna Begum, who lives across the road from the family, said the mother of the stabbed children was screaming as though she had been tortured.
‘I heard a woman screaming ‘Help me’,’ she said. ‘It sounded like she was being tortured. I knew something horrible must have happened, it went on for about 10 minutes.’
The neighbour said she later saw medics carrying a ‘little body’ in a bag outside. She added: ‘My heart just sank, it’s devastating, horrific. From a mother’s perspective … I’m still shaken from it, I can’t imagine what she feels at the moment.’
The couple’s daughter died at home as her son was rushed to hospital before dying in a major trauma centre.
Nithin Kumar, 40, is pictured with his wife Nisa and their one-year-old daughter and three-year-old son who were both killed in the horrific incident in Ilford, east London
Nithin Kumar (pictured) is in a critical condition in hospital after a one-year-old and three-year-old died last night
Police officers stand at the scene in Ilford, East London, this morning – with a pram pictured between the two of them
The heart-warming picture was taken at family birthday party around six months before Sunday’s tragic events.
Dressed in a traditional sari, Nisa lovingly clutches her young daughter while Mr Kumar tenderly holds onto his son.
Mr Kumar, who is known as Nithi, worked in a shop near his home and returned home shortly before 4.30pm.
Dressed in a green track suit top, he spent the day carrying out his normal duties attending to customers.
Mr Kumar is of Sri Lankan origin, as is Nisa. The couple married in 2014 and were well known within the local community.
His employer, Shanmugatha Thevadurai, 54 told MailOnline described Mr Kumar as a loving father who worked hard and was popular amongst regulars at the shop.
He said : ‘Everything was normal. Nithi was a wonderful man and a loyal worker. He opened the shop at 9am, worked a normal day and made me tea shortly before he left.’
A friend of the family added: ‘Nisa is devastated. She has lost her two beautiful children and she could also lose her husband because he is in a critical condition.’
A woman left two cuddly bunnies along with a note to ‘little angels’ outside the children’s home
Pictured: Teddy bears in a window at the scene as police investigate the deaths of a three-year-old boy and one-year-old girl who were stabbed in an alleged attempted murder-suicide
The pram is pictured at the scene in Ilford this morning following the death of two children from stab wounds
Retired builder Thomas Dodds, 78, who lives close by, told of his horror as the incident unfolded in the borough of Redbridge.
‘I could tell something awful had happened from the high pitched screaming. It sickens my heart, how could somebody do such a thing to a baby and a three-year-old child? They have no heart.
‘There was lots of screaming and panicking and then it just stopped. A couple of years ago something similar happened up the street where a bloke stabbed his wife to death and hid in the shed.
‘I was at home last night and I didn’t realise what happened until three police cars turned up. Next thing, three big ambulances and three more small ones arrived.’
Police, pictured at the scene today, are now conducting a murder investigation – but said all three people knew each other
A passer-by who lives in the road said she heard someone ‘screaming and screaming inside’ before police turned up and officers went ‘rushing in’.
The resident, who gave her name as Angelina, said the woman was helped out by police and appeared to be Asian and in her 30s.
She added: ‘The air ambulance came and that’s when I knew it was serious, that something nasty had happened.
‘It has absolutely shook me, I couldn’t sleep last night. I knew something terrible had happened but when it came out that two children had died, I was shaken.’ A shopkeeper who lives above the scene said the father of two is of Sri Lankan origin and seemed ‘normal.’
Two small toy rabbits, one blue and one white and pink, were left at the scene with a note saying: ‘Little angels, we are so sorry. Rest in Peace.’
Pictured: The man who is recovering in hospital, Nithin Kumar, following the fatal stabbing of his two children
Nithin Kumar worked at this shop in Ilford. He is currently in a critical condition in hospital
Several neighbours said the man, woman and children were of Sri Lankan descent but none knew them by name.
Neighbour Intisar Ahmed said they had lived there for around two years and that she saw a police officer take one of the injured children outside and try to save him with CPR.
She said: ‘I was so, so upset. I couldn’t believe it, the baby on the floor and the policeman trying first aid.
‘I saw them put him on the floor and it looks like they had taken the clothes off. I could hear the mother screaming.’
One woman, who did not want to be named, said: ‘A man and woman lived above the shops with their two children.
‘They were happy smiley kids, they were only 12 months and three years old so you can imagine. They were just happy playful children.
‘But the family kept themselves to themselves and they weren’t seen out that often. They lived in the flat with the white teddy bears and the snowflakes in the windows.’
Harshad Patel, 64, who lives above J + N newsagents, said: ‘They are my neighbours. There was a mother, the father and two children.
‘They came into my store occasionally and seemed like a normal family. They have a little baby girl and a three year old boy.’
The shopkeeper added: ‘They moved in around two, two and a half, years ago. He is Sri Lankan, but speaks a bit of English. He would come into the shop with his boy to buy milk and bread. He also came in sometimes with his baby.
‘There was never anything suspicious. They looked like a nice family. He always said ‘hello, how are you?’ and the wife looked happy. She once came into my store when she was pregnant with the baby.’
Harshad, who is originally from Uganda, explained that there are four flats behind the Vinayagan Stores newsagents and that the family lived on the ground floor.
He added: ‘I didn’t hear anything. One of my relatives called me to say the police had put a cordon up and something was wrong. I lifted my store shutters to see and the police told me to go back inside.
‘I saw the police officer enter the newsagents next door with the owner. I’m sad. They were our neighbours. How can you stab the children?’
Redbridge Council leader Jas Athwal said last night: ‘Earlier today there was an incident in Ilford. Two young children have passed away and an investigation is ongoing.
‘My thoughts are with the family and wider community who are grieving this unspeakable tragedy. We ask that everyone please respects the family’s privacy at this difficult time.’
Police are pictured at the scene in Ilford last night following the shocking incident which left two children dead
A police oficer stands next to a pram outside the scene in Ilford last night as detectives continue to investigate
Redbridge Council leader Jas Athwal said last night that two young children had died and an ‘investigation is ongoing’
Ilford North Labour MP Wes Streeting last night confirmed that he had been in touch with Mayor Sadiq Khan about the tragic deaths
The London Ambulance Service and London’s Air Ambulance also attended the incident, and enquiries into the circumstances continue.
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: ‘Police were called at approximately 5.30pm on Sunday, April 26 following reports of a man and two children injured at a residential address in Aldborough Road North, Ilford.
Police were called at 5.40pm yesterday to an address in Ilford, East London, to reports of a man and two youngsters injured.
A spokesperson for the Met Polcie said: ‘Officers, London Ambulance Service and London’s Air Ambulance attended. A one-year-old girl was pronounced dead at the scene. A three-year-old boy was taken to hospital for treatment but subsequently died.
‘A 40-year-old man has been taken hospital for treatment; condition awaits. All three suffered knife injuries. It is believed all parties involved are known to each other.
‘At this early stage, police are not looking for anyone else in connection with this incident. Homicide detectives from Specialist Crime investigate. Enquiries into the circumstances continue.’
The murder investigation was launched as Britain continues to be in lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, with more than 20,000 people now dead from the infection in the country.
Ilford North Labour MP Wes Streeting last night confirmed that he had been in touch with Mayor Sadiq Khan about the tragic deaths.
The deaths came as Britain endured three other deaths from knife attacks across the country this weekend – while a 16-year-old boy was left fighting for his life in hospital. One case saw a man in his 20s stabbed to death in Newham, east London last night.
Three other people were killed and one was left fighting for his life over the weekend. The fatal attacks were in Newham and Smethwick. A man was due to appear in court today charged with murder in Hackney. Two teenagers were stabbed in Solihull
In the West Midlands, a 20-year-old man was killed and a 16-year-old boy was left fighting for his life after two separate knife attacks.
Police arrested a 14-year-old boy on suspicion of attempted murder after two teenagers were stabbed in broad daylight on Chapelhouse Road in Solihull at around 2.40pm yesterday.
Two hours later, a man was found with serious knife wounds following a second attack at the West Cross Shopping Centre in Smethwick. The air ambulance was called − but the victim was pronounced dead before he could be taken on board.
In another separate incident, a man was due to appear at Thames magistrates’ court today charged with murder over the death of a man in Trinity Close, Hackney.
The incident was said to have taken place at 12.25pm on Saturday. Romayne Husbands, 26, from east London, was arrested by homicide detectives, reports the Evening Standard.
The victim in Smethwick had suffered knife injuries and the air ambulance was called − but unfortunately the man was pronounced dead before he could be taken on board
A man was found with serious injuries following an attack at the West Cross Shopping Centre in Smethwick (Pictured: police at the scene)
Courtesy DAILY MAIL