The city erupted in anger on Wednesday over the twin murders a medical student, A Bhargavi, and her mother Sakuntala in Haranathapuram Colony the day before. People, who turned out in large numbers to stage protests, were seething with so much anger that they demanded instant death to the killers as they had no right to live. They even demanded that the killers be handed over to them for instant justice.
Traffic came to a halt at several busy places in the city for a couple of hours in the morning as hundreds of students, political activists and members of the public voluntarily came out on the roads to stage protests demanding action against the culprits. Student organisatioins SFI, TNSF, ABVP and others, the staff of Narayana Medical College, activists of TDP, YSRCP, BJP and Left parties sat on a dharna at the VRC Centre. Police blocked the road between the Gandhi statue and VRC Centre to prevent traffic snarls. Some private establishments in the vicinity were forced to down shutters.
Students, people and political leaders flocked to Dinakar Reddy’s house where the bodies of Sakuntala (43) and her daughter Bhargavi (22) were kept for public view.
There were some tense moments when students obstructed the local MP, Mekapati Rajamohan Reddy, from visiting the house, accusing public representatives of failure to prevent the crime.
Finance minister Anam Ramanarayana Reddy called on Dinakar Reddy who is undergoing treatment at Bollineni Hospital.
Describing the incident as heinous act, the minister assured that the government would do its best to award capital punishment to the killers.
ANGRY REACTIONS: K Anushka, a student of Vagdevi Pharma College, which was set up by Bhargavi’s father A Dinakar Reddy, said the killers deserved instant death by any means as the judicial process would take long and not relieve the pain of the bereaved family.
“If the government fails to initiate stringent action against the accused, it is not possible for people to live peacefully in the city,” said Kolluru Vimalamma, a resident of Haranathapuram. Only instant death for the killers could act as a deterrent to such crimes in the future, she said.
Bhargavi’s classmate, A Vakula Kumari, said Bhargavi was a brilliant student and topper. She too demanded instant death for the three killers.
Local MP Mekapati Rajamohana Reddy too demanded capital punishment to the killers. Saying that the crime rate was on the rise in the district, he wanted the government to take stringent measures to restore people’s confidence in governance.
‘DO NOT SPARE MINORS’: Two of the three killers, Murali Manoj and Vamsi Krishna, are said to be minors and Intermediate dropouts. But the protesters, and even the Nellore MP, demanded amendment of the Juvenile Justice Board Laws to award capital punishment to the two killers for committing the heinous crime.
Last year, the Nellore district police arrested five Intermediate students for sending lewd and filthy messages to several women and girls in the town and handed them over to the Juvenile Justice Board. Incidentally, one of the accused of the Delhi gang-rape is also a minor. These incidents led to the clamour for showing no lenience to killers even if they happen to be minors.