Techie charred to death, mother injured in fire lit by youth at their Adambakkam home
Condition of victim’s mother, sister critical; youth had been pestering the girl to marry him, but she was not interested; groom hunting by victim’s parents triggered the attack, police say; accused r
CHENNAI: A 21-year-old girl died of burns after she was set afire in her house at Adambakkam on Monday allegedly by a youth who was angry because she rejected his proposal to marry her. S Induja’s mother Renuka and sister Nivedhika also suffered severe burn injuries when they tried to save the girl and are now hospitalised.
“The house was full of smoke and we could not even see. I managed to reach the bedroom and was trying to open the windows (for the smoke to get out) when I spotted her lying unconscious on the floor. Most of her skin and clothes were burnt. We brought her to the hall and covered her with two of her mother’s sarees and waited for ambulance,” said Raghu, one of the neighbours who rushed to the rescue.
The neighbours said they spotted M Akash, a 22-year-old college dropout, leaving the house just as they were rushing in around 8.25 pm. Induja’s schoolmate, Akash is said to have occasionally visited the house and had been pestering her to marry him, but she was not interested.
Police said the immediate reason for Akash’s anger was that he learnt the family was looking for a groom for the girl after she recently completed her BE course and got placed in an IT company.
Police inspector A Murali, who investigated the case, said the youth is suspected to have come prepared with petrol in a five-litre can and kept it on the shoe rack at the entrance of house before he went inside. “He tried to convince Induja’s mother Renuka asking her daughter’s hand in marriage.
When Renuka said a clear no to him, he asked her to permit him to speak to Induja. She stood by her mother’s decision. He came out and returned with the can of petrol and poured it on her threatening to kill Induja and himself. Renuka and Nivedhika tried to stop him. It was then he threw a cigarette lighter on her and fled. The mother and sister were injured when they tried to save Induja,” the inspector said.
Neighbours in the Seventh Street at Saraswathi Nagar rushed to the house assuming it to be a fire accident. “We brought out Renuka and Nivedhika and were unaware that Induja was inside. Only after Renuka told us, we went inside the house to look for Induja. She was unconscious,” said Raghu. Induja was taken to
Chromepet government hospital where she was declared ‘brought dead’.
Renuka and Nivedhika are undergoing treatment at Kilpauk Medical College and hospital. They have suffered 50 per cent and 23 per cent burn injures, respectively. A senior doctor at the hospital said they have suffered severe burn injures on the face and are in a critical condition.
Induja’a father was working in a private company in Canada and had left the city last week for work.
Police said they caught Akash when he came to take his bike he had left near Induja’s house.
A case has been registered and Akash was remanded in judicial custody.