Suspecting unnatural death in the case of a 33-year-old man whose body was found on a road in Ernakulam, the Thrikkakara police on Saturday filed an FIR. On Sunday, after investigation, the FIR was altered and Section 302 (punishment for murder) to invoke murder charges against the culprits was added. The deceased was identified as Jibin Varghese, an electrician by profession and a resident of Thammanam. He was found dead along the Kakkanad – Palachuvadu road in Ernakulam district around 4 am on Saturday. The police told TNM that Jibin was reportedly murdered by the relatives of the woman with whom he was supposedly having an affair. Following the murder, the culprits even staged an accident scene to avoid getting caught, leaving the deceased and his scooter on the deserted main road.
Deceased tied up and beaten to death: police
Speaking to the media, Kochi City Police Commissioner S Surendran said that although at first the police thought it was an accident where Jibin’s scooter had collided with another vehicle, on further investigation, suspicions of an unnatural death arose.
“When we examined the site as well as the deceased man’s body, we could not find evidence of an accident. This led to doubts and we formed police teams who conducted a detailed investigation at the accident site. From this, we realised that this was an unnatural death and not caused by a road accident,” Surendran said.
Ten police teams were formed for investigations. Based on their investigations, it was found that Jibin, who hailed from Kakkanad, had visited the house of one of the accused Aseez at 12 midnight on March 9. It was here that the other accused allegedly came together and carried out the murder.
“There are people who saw Jibin in these clothes the previous night and seen him reaching Aseez’s house. Here, Aseez along with the other accused, which includes family and neighbours of the woman Jibin was having an affair with, tied him up to a staircase and beat him to death. Jibin’s ribs were broken and he had internal bleeding – the main causes of his death,” Surendran added.
Following the murder, a group of six of the accused reportedly took the body as well as Jibin’s scooter and left them in a deserted stretch of the Palachuvadu main road to make it look like an accident.
“Aseez took the autorickshaw of Ali, another accused. Two other accused, Salam and Manaf, accompanied him in the auto, with the former holding the deceased and the latter sitting in the front of the auto. Two other accused, Shihab and Nisar, rode the deceased’s scooter and followed the auto. Once they reached the deserted Kakkanad – Palachuvadu main road, they left the scooter and the body there and returned,” the Commissioner added.
Seven taken into custody
Out of a total of 14 accused, 7 have been taken into custody. The 7 accused have been identified as Vazhakala residents Manaf, Ali (40), KE Salam (48), Muhammed Faisal (23), KK Sirajudheen (49), KI Yusuf (42) and Ajaas (31). The accused are all relatives and neighbours of the woman that Jibin was reportedly having an affair with. According to a Times of India report, Jibin, a married man, was in a relationship with a married woman who was living with her husband in Perumbavoor. When the woman’s husband learnt about the alleged affair, he sent her to her paternal house in Thrikkakara.
Following this, an argument reportedly erupted at her paternal house and the police suspected that Jibin was then summoned by the woman’s family to their house in Thrikkakara. The ToI report states that a fight broke out between Jibin and the woman’s family members, which eventually led to his murder.
According to the report, the woman’s relatives claimed that Jibin was alive when they abandoned him at Palachuvadu thinking someone would provide him medical assistance.
The Commissioner has constituted 20 teams to investigate the case, as the number of accused is high.
“We have formed teams to investigate each of the accused. Cyber cell investigation and scientific evidence examination teams are also part of this. We have also found sufficient evidence from the house where Jibin was beaten up,” Surendran added.