Murder of an engineering student jolts Raichur, victim found hanging from a tree

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Murder of an engineering student jolts Raichur, victim found hanging from a tree

A shocking case of cold blooded murder and rape has emerged from Karnataka’s Raichur district. The body of a 23-year-old woman was found hanging from a tree in a farm located behind the Husukina Hanumantha Temple close to Manik Prabhu Layout on April 15. 

A case of murder has been registered at the Netaji Nagar Police Station and the investigation is underway. According to the police, the deceased was identified as an engineering student from Raichur, who went missing on April 13. Raichur Superintendent of Police Kishore Babu told TNM that the charge of rape had not been confirmed yet as the medical report was awaited. 

The young woman attended college on April 13 but did not return home prompting her parents to approach Sadara Bazar Police Station. The parents allege that police officials did not file a case since the missing woman was not a minor. Students at the institute claim that she attended classes in the morning but was not to be seen later. Police stated that CCTV visuals show the woman entering the college but there is no record of her stepping out of the gate.

After she was not found for another day, the parents say they once again approached the police station but a case was not registered. 

"We approached the police once again on the afternoon of April 14. The police said she may have gone away with friends and she would be back. They neglected our complaint," the girl's father told TNM.

On April 15, the parents received a call from Netaji Nagar Police Station stating that they had found their daughter’s Aadhaar card next to a body along with a suicide note. The note stated that she had backlogs in her exams and that her grades were the reason she decided to take such a step. 

Police stated that the woman's clothes were torn in some places. However, it was not confirmed whether the tear was due to decomposition of the body or whether the perpetrator had  torn the clothes. Her bag was lying open and her lunch box was found a lying a few meters away from her bag. The contents of her bag was strewn around the crime scene among which was the alleged suicide note. Police also said that one of her hand was dismembered. "We believe dogs may have dismembered it but we will know conclusively only after autopsy report comes in," the police said.

The news of the woman's death spread through the district and classmates of the woman and students studying in the institute staged a protest demanding justice. The students contended that the suicide note was fake and that this was a clear case of murder. "It is very clear that the note was false. She cleared her exams and was happy when the results of the re-evaluation were released on the night of April 12. This is a case of murder and we will not stop protesting until the police conduct a thorough and unbiased enquiry”, a student studying in the institute told TNM.

TNM has accessed her report cards which state that she has passed in all subjects. A large number of students organised a candle-light march on Wednesday. The students threatened to block people from voting in atleast one polling booth on April 23. 

Faced with massive protests, police officials who had maintained that it was a case of suicide, were forced to register a case of rape and murder on Thursday. On Thursday night, they arrested a 25-year-old man named Sudarshan Yadav in connection with the case. According to the police, the property on which the girl's body was found belonged to Sudarshan's father.

The police and the young woman's friends also told TNM that the duo had been in a relationship. "They were together. It is hard to believe that something like this would happen," said a student who did not wish to be named.  

Police say Sudarshan was arrested and was being questioned based on a suspicion raised by the parents. The parents have alleged that he had been harasssing the victim. "My daughter was not in a relationship with anyone. Sudarshan was harassing her. She was a good student. We knew that she would not commit suicide over her grades when she had passed. That's why we want the police to investigate this properly," the woman's father told TNM.

However, the student community believes there is more than what meets the eye and more people including those from the young woman's community and Sudarshan's friends too need to be investigated. The Superintendent of Police is likely to address a press meet later on Friday.

With inputs from Prajwal Bhat