Sandeep murder: All 5 suspects nabbed within 18 hours of brutal crime

PB Sandeep Kumar
PB Sandeep Kumar.

Thiruvalla: All five suspects in the brutal murder of CPM local leader P B Sandeep Kumar are now in the police net and have been remanded in custody within 18 hours of the crime that stunned the Peringara village near Thiruvalla town in Kerala's Pathanamthitta district.

The first accused Jishnu has confessed to murdering Sandeep, the Pulikeezhu police stated while confirming that the motive of the crime was past enmity.

Jishnu's grouse against Sandeep was the latter's alleged role in getting his mother dismissed from her job at a public sector company. The accused likely believed Sandeep being the local committee secretary of CPM's Peringara branch could have exercised his influence in getting her fired.

Political murder, say police now

Jishnu, 23, too was a local functionary of Yuva Morcha in the same area, Peringara, where Sandeep was active. He once held the post of president of the Yuva Morcha's panchayat committee. This has now given rise to the CPM allegation that Sandeep's was a political murder at the behest of the right-wing outfit, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) or its political wing the BJP. The Pulikeezhu police too have now taken a stand that it is a political murder, though a day earlier it had ruled out that possibility.

The FIR mentions that the first accused Jishnu had previous enmity with Sandeep. It clearly states that Jishnu is a BJP activist and the other accused are his accomplices. However, the reason for the previous enmity has not been specified clearly.

The others arrested apart from Jishnu are: Nandu Aji, 24, of Vengal; Pramod, 23, Changanassery; Mohammad Faizal, alias Jinaz, 22, of Kannur in north Kerala; and Vishnu Kumar, alias Abhi, 25, of Alamthuruth in Ernakulam district.

The police have slapped various charges against the accused including murder, murder threat and unlawful assembly.

Police quick on the trail

After hacking Sandeep to death at 8 pm on Thursday, the assailants left for different directions in three bikes. Their mobile phones were switched off.

The police tracked the phone calls made by the assailants just before switching off the phones and the investigations that were carried out subsequently led to the arrest of Jishnu, Nandu and Pramod in the wee hours of Friday. They were arrested from the house of Jishnu's relative.

Faizal was arrested from a lodge at Kuttapuzha, near Thiruvalla town, and Vishnu Kumar was arrested by Friday afternoon from Edathua.

The machete used for hacking Sandeep was recovered from the lodge at Kuttapuzha, while a sword was seized from Perinagara.

The cause of death is deep cuts on Sandeep's chest and back which led to massive blood loss. There were 18 deep wounds on his body.

Sandeep's body was brought to his house at Chathankary at 6 pm on Friday and cremated.

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