KOCHI: The police have cracked the case involving the recovery of the skeletal remains of a woman found stuffed inside an abandoned barrel at Kumbalam in January after positively identifying the perpetrator of the crime. Officers said the victim Udayamperoor native K S Shakunthala, 54, who has already been identified by the sleuths after her DNA samples perfectly matched those of her daughter, was murdered by T M Sajith, hailing from Eroor.Sajith was the paramour of Aswathy, daughter of Shakunthala. He was found dead barely 24 hours after the barrel stuffed with the skeletal remains had been recovered.
“The woman used to blackmail Sajith over his illicit relationship with her daughter Aswathy, which led to the crime. The deceased had threatened to reveal Sajith’s illicit relationship to his wife. Following this, he decided to eliminate her and the murder is believed to have taken place in September 2016,” said an officers. After committing the murder, Sajith stuffed the dead body inside a barrel with the help of his friend. The accused later contracted five others to dump the barrel in the Kochi backwaters. “They were told the barrel contained bones and skulls of animals, which was used for making iridium. It was transported to Kumbalam in a mini-truck and was dumped at an isolated location in the dead of the night,’’ officers said.
The police have approached the court seeking permission to run a polygraph test on Aswathy, daughter of Shakunthala. A police team comprising top officers with the Kochi City police had earlier quizzed her for several hours. The barrel containing the skeleton was found adrift on the Kochi backwaters on January 8 this year. Only the skeleton, some hair strands and bits and pieces of clothes were found from the plastic barrel filled with concrete mix. The police secured a major breakthrough with the recovery of a 6.5 cm malleolar screw from the skeleton. Later, the investigators found only six persons had been implanted with the screw from a hospital in Tripunithura. Though five of these persons were tracked down, the sixth one could not be located as it was Shakunthala.