What really happened to The Serpent's Ajay?

In the BBC series Ajay is shown as Charles Sobhraj's accomplice

Charles Sobhraj in BBC's The Serpent
(Image credit: BBC)

The Serpent's Ajay is played brilliantly by actor Amesh Edireweera in the BBC drama, but the question of what happened to him in real life remains. The BBC show depicts the horrific crimes of serial killer Charles Sobhraj, but as it suggests, he had a lot of help with his sinister plans. In The Serpent, Jenna Coleman plays Sobhraj’s partner Marie-Andrée Leclerc. The former medical secretary from Quebec is quickly drawn in by Sobhraj’s manipulations and charisma. 

However, whilst her role becomes even more important as series progresses, she’s not the only accomplice that the twisted killer is thought to have recruited. In real life, as The Serpent shows, Sobhraj reportedly had help from a man called Ajay Chowdhury. Now some viewers might be wondering who Ajay Chowdhury was in real life.  

For those who haven't yet watched to the end of the series, warning: spoilers ahead, and for those who have, here's what really happened to Ajay...

Did The Serpent’s Ajay really exist?

Whilst BBC’s The Serpent presents a fictional dramatisation of true events, it seems like they did get it right when they depict Ajay Chowdhury as killer Sobhraj’s right hand man. 

The pair are understood to have met in Thailand and from then on, Ajay became a devoted follower. The Serpent suggests that Ajay helped Sobhraj carry out his evil plans, assisting with luring tourists in and murdering them.

Ajay in BBC's The Serpent

(Image credit: BBC)

Entertainment Daily reports that, according to the Nepal police and Interpol, Ajay really did help Sobhraj commit a series of murders, robberies and passport thefts.

He is also understood to have been suspected of burning the bodies of their victims to avoid them quickly being identified.

What happened to Ajay? 

The truth of what really happened to Ajay Chowdhury is still unclear to this day. In The Serpent, he is depicted as having been abandoned in the middle of nowhere by Charles Sobhraj who decides to take Marie-Andrée to Paris instead of Ajay. 

In real life, Ajay is suspected by some of having died after he was sent on an errand trip to Malaysia for Sobhraj in around 1976. However this is unconfirmed and it seems that no one truly knows what became of Ajay. 

Sobhraj and Leclerc were both arrested and convicted for multiple murders. Sobhraj remains in prison in Nepal whilst Leclerc passed away in 1984. 

All episodes of The Serpent are available to watch on BBC iPlayer now.