Kerala woman’s snakebite death: Husband taken into custody on suspicion of foul play

The husband is suspected of killing the 26-year-old earlier this month using a snake that he got with the help of his snake catcher friends.
Uthra, woman died of snakebite in Kerala
Uthra, woman died of snakebite in Kerala
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The death of a 26-year-old Kerala woman who died of snakebite earlier this month has taken a mysterious turn after her parents alleged foul play in her death.

Uthra was found dead at her parents’ home at Eram near Anchal in the outskirts of Kollam on May 7.

Her parents, Vijayasenan and Manimeghala, allege that Uthra was murdered. It’s suspected that Uthra’s husband Sooraj executed the crime with the help of snake catchers. Sooraj works at a private finance firm and the couple has a one-year-old child.

The Crime Branch team, which took over the investigation on Saturday, took Sooraj and three accomplices into custody on Sunday in connection with the death. Though some reports suggest that Sooraj has confessed to the crime, investigating officer Deputy Superintendent of Police A Asokan told TNM that “it hasn’t been confirmed yet”.

“The death is suspicious though post-mortem suggests that snake poison caused the death. We have been interrogating Sooraj and his accomplices, it’s suspicious that he had links with snake catchers. We’re likely to reach a conclusion by this evening,” the officer added.

Uthra was found unconscious in a room at her parents’ house and reportedly brought dead to a nearby private hospital. According to reports, a snake was found in the room that night.

The case was initially investigated by the Circle Inspector of Anchal Police Station, Sudheer. It was handed over to the Rural Crime Branch team after Uthra’s parents lodged a complaint with the Rural Superintendent of Police Harishankar, saying that Sooraj’s version of the death was suspicious and alleging foul play.

What is also mysterious is that Uthra had been bitten by a snake earlier at Sooraj’s house at Parakot in Adoor. She had come to her parents’ home for treatment. According to reports, she had told her parents that Sooraj’s friends had come to the house with a snake and Sooraj had taken the snake in his hand.

When Uthra was bitten by the snake at her parents’ home, Sooraj was also in the room. However, in his initial statement to the police he said he didn’t know that she had been bitten by a snake.

While her parents claim that the door and the windows of the room were closed that night and that there was no chance of a snake entering the room, Sooraj’s statement said that he had opened the windows later.

Uthra’s parents have also complained that her jewellery is missing.


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