Hyderabad: Six of the seven persons arrested in connection with the alleged honour killing of a Dalit Christian man in Telangana's Nalgonda district were sent to judicial custody by a court on Wednesday, police said.
In a related development, the wife of the deceased and her father-in-law demanded stern punishment for all those arrested by awarding them death penalty and to ensure a speedy trial.
Seven persons, including two men acquitted in the murder of former Gujarat home minister Haren Pandya, were on Tuesday arrested in connection with the killing of 23-year-old P Pranay Kumar, who had married an upper caste woman Amrutha Varshini, at Miryalguda in Nalgonda district.
Pranay's killing on 14 September had sparked an outrage in the state.
Amrutha's father Maruti Rao, whom she had accused of being behind her husband's murder along with her uncle Shravan, was among those arrested in what turned out to be a case of contract killing of Rs one crore, Nalgonda police chief AV Ranganath said on Tuesday.
Maruti Rao, who was opposed to the marriage of his daughter, conspired with other accused to eliminate Kumar and also paid an advance of Rs 15 lakh, police said.
Shocking CCTV footage of the incident showed Pranay walking out of a hospital in Miryalguda with his pregnant wife when the assailant, who was later identified as Subhash Kumar Sharma, paced up and attacked him with a machete from behind, killing him instantaneously.
Amrutha, from 'vaishya' community, had claimed on Monday her father and uncle were behind the attack as they strongly disapproved of her marrying a Dalit Christian.
Asghar Ali and Abdul Bari, who were acquitted in the murder of Pandya, had hired the "assassin" Subhash Sharma from Bihar to execute the murder, police said.
Local Congress leader Abdul Karim, who is a friend of Rao, and car driver Siva are the other accused in the case.
"Six of the accused were produced before a local court which remanded them in 14 days judicial custody," an investigation official told PTI over phone from Miryalguda.
He said that Sharma, who attacked Pranay, was apprehended from Samastipur in Bihar and is being brought to Nalgonda on a transit warrant.
Since 9 August, the hired killers conducted a recee of different places before executing their plan on Friday last, police said, adding Sharma allegedly made attempts to kill Pranay twice, but were both unsuccessful.
Maruthi Rao pressured his daughter to get the foetus aborted but failed, they said.
Amrutha and Pranay's father P Balaswamy told reporters that all those involved in the murder of Pranay should be handed the death penalty and it should be seen that none of them get bail.
"They should be kept in the jail only and should not be released. If they are released they may again target us," the family members said.
"I felt he (Rao) may take away Amrutha but had never thought he will get my son killed."
"They were opposed to the inter-caste marriage and that's the reason for the murder," Pranay's father said.
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Updated Date: Sep 19, 2018 23:47:28 IST