TN: Man Admits Murdering Daughter And Husband As Revenge For Marrying Out Of Caste
Days after a Dalit inter-caste couple was brutally hacked to death in their beds in Tuticorin, the woman’s father, has allegedly admitted to committing the murder.
According to police, a machete was used as the weapon to saw into the wrists and necks of the couple in the wee hours of Thursday, July 4. Images from the crime scene showed horrific pictures of chopped limbs and blood.
The accused, 55-year-old Alagar, admitted to having killed the couple as an act of revenge for marrying out of caste. However, the murdered man’s relatives claim that hired assassins were involved.
The victims, both of who were 24 years old, had fallen in love while working in a salt pan. While Jothi belonged to the Pallar community, Solairaj belonged to the Paraiyar community of Scheduled castes.
Jothi left her house to get married to Solairaj in April when her family opposed the marriage. The father threatened them with violence if they went ahead with their plans to marry. When the police were informed, they let the father off with a warning.
At the time of the murder, Jothi was three months pregnant.
The police maintain that the crime was committed by only one man, although the injuries are barbaric and fatal.
“At around 4am on Thursday, 4 July morning, Alagar has entered the house where the couple was sleeping in the porch. There was no electricity. He used an ‘Aruval’ (machete) to murder them,” The Quint quoted Superintendent of Police Arun Balagopalan as saying. The father confessed that he committed the crime alone, and has been booked for murder and under the SC/ST Act.
Relatives of Solairaj, however, remain uneasy.
“There are some eyewitnesses in the village who say that a group of men were seen fleeing from the spot on bikes. We do not think that a 55-year-old could have easily overpowered two young people this way,” said Antony, Solairaj’s uncle.
“In fact the perpetrator has not even entered through the door. He jumped into the house. We are not very satisfied with the investigation,” he added.
The relatives further claimed that the crime could have been prevented had police given the couple protection or detained the father when they first approached the police.
The police, however, claimed that the couple had not specifically asked for protection. In such cases, they said, people are usually let off with a warning.
Anti-caste activists claim that the actions of the police are contradictory to directives from the Madras High Court. The court had earlier ordered the formation of a Special cell in all districts in order to handle matters concerning inter-caste couples.
In fact, in July 2018, a status report was filed by the state government, confirming the establishment of the same.