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Chennai techie murder case: Accused knew Swathi through Facebook

The 22-year-old arrested for the murder of S Swathi, a Chennai-based Infosys employee, will be brought before the Chennai Egmore court on Monday, according to The Indian Express.

Ramkumar, the key accused in the case had been recuperating in a hospital, after he reportedly slit his neck with a sharp object to escape arrest.

On the early morning of 24 June, Chennai arose to a shocking story of the murder of a young woman at Nungambakkam station amid thousands of horrified onlookers. The killer coolly approached 24-year-old S Swathi from behind and hacked her to death with a sickle that he was carrying in his backpack. According to reports, the killer took only 10 minutes to murder Swathi and escape the spot unstopped.

Since then, numerous questions had been brewing around the identity and motives of the killer in the sensational murder case, which were only partly answered when a youth was arrested on Friday night.

The only piece of evidence available initially was a grainy image of the killer captured in a CCTV footage.

S Swathi murder case

The image of the killer as captured in CCTV footage

However, after a fresh high resolution image was obtained from a privately installed camera, the police apprehended Ramkumar, a 22-year-old engineering graduate from Tirunelveli district, as the prime accused in the Swathi murder case. He was tracked down in his native village in Tirunelveli district.

The police, however, were in for a surprise when he tried slitting his throat to escape arrest. Following this, Ramkumar was admitted to the local government hospital and given first-aid. Later on Monday morning, he was shifted to the Royapettah general hospital in Chennai, where he is expected to be brought before the court, according to The Hindu.

The police, who were on the tracks of the killer for over a week, were surprised to find that Ramkumar was constantly using his mobile, before he was arrested. "Right from the scene of crime (Nungambakkam railway station) to his arrest in Meenakshipuram, he never switched off his mobile phone. He has made and received calls as usual…,” a senior police officer is quoted as saying in The Hindu.

Following the arrest, as the family of the accused demanded the strictest punishment for the accused, fresh controversies arose as cops claimed that Ramkumar was mentally unstable, according to Zee News.

Meanwhile, as the police probed the motives behind the murder, several threads have surfaced linking the accused to Swathi, suggesting she was not completely unknown to Ramkumar. The Zee News report stated that a family member had conceded that Swathi has shared that she was being pestered by a friend for marriage. The police commissioner was also quoted as saying that the accused knew Swathi and was stalking her since months, which she chose to ignore.

Now, fresh reports have surfaced claiming Ramkumar was friends with Swathi on Facebook. According to a report published in the Deccan Chronicles the duo came in touch over the social media site and had exchanged numbers, following which the accused became obsessed with Swathi and started stalking her.

The report further claims that a police official involved in the investigation has said that the two had a few exchanges, which included chat messages and comments made by Ramkumar on Swathi's photos.

Apparently, miffed over Swathi's refusal, the accused planned to take her life. According to The Deccan Chronicle, he took his uncle's sickle without his knowledge and kept it hidden under his bed in Choolaimedu and carried it in his backpack on the day of the murder.

The police officer, however, maintained "Being friends on Facebook doesn't mean that Swathi approved or encouraged him. She had numerous Facebbok friends," as quoted in the Deccan Chronicle report.

Rankumar, who was infatuated with the girl, had shifted to Chennai with the dreams of making it big in the film industry and had deliberately chosen to stay in Choolaimedu, as it was close to Swathi's place.

Updated Date: Jul 04, 2016 13:21 PM

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