The Hyderabad High Court on Saturday dismissed a plea regarding the erection of a statue of Pranay Perumalla in Telangana's Miryalaguda town in Nalgonda district. Justice C Praveen Kumar was hearing a petition filed by Chinnam Venkata Ramana Rao, who had challenged the erection of the statue.
23-year-old Pranay, a Dalit, was hacked to death in a brutal case of caste killing in September this year as he was coming out of a hospital with his pregnant wife Amrutha. The police said that the murder had been planned by Amrutha's father, Maruthi Rao, as he opposed the inter-caste marriage.
The counsel representing the Telangana government informed the court that it had not granted permission for the statue, adding that it had already conveyed to Pranay's father, Balaswamy, to approach the authorities for permission before erecting the statue, following the orders issued by the Supreme Court on setting up statues in public places.
Following this, the court dismissed the case. The issue of erecting a statue had been a contentious one since the beginning ever since Amrutha made the demand, following her husband's death. She demanded that the statue be erected in the centre of the town to remind people about the incident and prevent such crimes in the future.
While some activists managed to dig up the road and lay a foundation for the statue, authorities soon stepped in and stopped the work. Irked by the move, some moved the High Court opposing the statue, and it has been in limbo since then.
Earlier this week, all seven accused in the killing were denied bail by a special court in Telangana's Nalgonda district including Maruthi Rao. Balaswamy and Amrutha, had appeared in court for the hearing.
Amrutha opposed bail to Maruthi Rao, her father, stating that there might be danger to her life if he was released on bail. The public prosecutor appearing for the Telangana government had also opposed the bail petitions.
Amrutha and Pranay had married in January this year against the wishes of Rao, a businessman who comes from an upper caste. The police said that it was a clear case of caste killing and stated that Maruthi Rao struck the deal to kill his son-in-law for Rs 1 crore.