Key suspect in student’s rape, murder case held

March 1st, 2008 - 6:15 pm ICT by admin  

Hyderabad, March 1 (IANS) The police have arrested a key suspect in the sensational rape and murder case of a young woman student in Vijaywada in Andhra Pradesh. Ayesha Meeran, 19, a first year student of B. Pharmacy, was killws on the night of Dec 27 in her room at a ladies hostel.

The suspect, identified as Gurvinder Singh alias Laddu, was arrested from the coastal city of Visakhapatnam.

The suspect was brought to Vijayawada late Friday and produced before a court Saturday. The hearing on a petition by the police seeking court’s permission for conducting certain tests on the accused was adjourned to March 4.

The police plan to conduct DNA and handwriting tests of Laddu, who is suspected to be involved in two other murder cases in the region in November. He allegedly murdered another college student and a watchwoman of a ladies’ hostel.

Additional Director General of Police A.K. Khan has gone to Vijayawada to monitor the investigation.

A letter dropped by the assailant near the body had stated that the girl was raped and murdered for refusing his request for ‘love’.

Ayesha, who hailed from Tenali in Guntur district, had returned to the hostel the same day after celebrating Eid at her native place.

It is not clear how the intruder gained entry into the girls hostel in the night and how residents in adjacent rooms could not hear any sound.

The police failed to identify the guilty despite questioning over 50 people. Also, DNA and other tests were carried out on more than a dozen suspects including the owner of the private hostel.

The case drew wide attention as various women and students’ organisations took to the streets demanding justice for Ayesha’s family.

Ayesha’s parents alleged that the police were deliberately going slow as the accused had political connections.

Last month, the government announced that the case would be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The police, however, continued its investigations.

Making a unique offer, the government announced a reward of half a million rupees to anyone providing information leading to the arrest of the assailant.

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