Tirupur rural police have revealed that an 11-year-old girl whose charred body was found at Pongaliyur near Veerakeralam in Coimbatore district on Tuesday morning, was raped and burnt alive after she witnessed the murder of her father by a five member gang at Manikkapuram near Palladam in Tirupur district.
The shocking double murders came to light after police found the bodies of T Mahalakshmi in Coimbatore district and her father S Thangavel near Mangalam in Tirupur district.
Four people including P Selvam alias Subramani, 43, a power loom unit owner of Kannan Nagar near Manikkapuram, were arrested by Tirupur rural police on Wednesday. Police are on the lookout for Selvam's brother-in-law P Rangaraj, 40, of Pongaliyur near Veerakeralam, for raping and killing the minor girl with an iron rod.
"Postmortem report confirmed that the deceased was raped and was alive when she was doused in petrol and set ablaze. The doctors who had done the postmortem said they found smoke particles in her lungs," said Amit Kumar Singh, superintendent of police, Tirupur district.
The others arrested include M Deivasigamani, 39, K Nagaraj, 27, both employed at power loom units and natives of Naduvelampalayam near Palladam, S Anand, 27, a tailor from Nathagoundanpalayam near Palladam and P Rangaraj, 40, an employee at a casting and molding unit in Pongaliyur.
Police said, Selvam and three accomplices had abducted Thangavel and his daughter Mahalakshmi at 6.30pm on Monday. They took the duo to Selvam's power loom unit cum residence where the minor girl was kept with Selvam's family. Her father Thangavel was assaulted with a wooden log and murdered in another room in the unit.
Following the murder, Nagaraj and Anand left the crime scene. But Selvam and Deivasigamani bought petrol for Rs2,000 from a nearby petrol bunk. Accompanied by the child, Selvam took Thangavel's body to an area near Mangalam where he burned it. Subsequently, he called his brother-in-law Rangaraj who told him to take the child to Pongaliyur where they planned to murder her.
Police registered a case under sections 120 (b) (criminal conspiracy), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of offence), 363 (punishment for kidnapping), 364 (kidnapping or abducting in order to murder), 365 (kidnapping or abducting with intent secretly and wrongfully to confine person), 376 (rape), 302 (murder) of IPC and under section 6 of Protection of Children from sexual offences) Act 2012.
"We have vital clues about Rangaraj and would arrest him soon," said SP Amit Kumar Singh.
Police officials said that all the arrested accused would be remanded on Thursday morning.
A Subburaj Oct 8, 2015