Kovai siblings' rape, murder case: Manoharan guilty, says court

Judge M P Subramaniam holds the lone surviving accused in Kovai siblings’ rape and murder case guilty on five criminal counts

Published: 30th October 2012 09:05 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th October 2012 09:05 AM   |  A+A-

Manoharan

Delivering the verdict in the sensational abduction, rape and murder of school-going siblings R Muskan (10) and R Rithik (7) that shook Coimbatore two years ago, the Mahila Court Judge M P Subramaniam on Monday held Manoharan - the lone surviving accused in the case - guilty on all five criminal counts.

The quantum of sentence would be pronounced on November 1. Manoharan, a van driver, who had colluded with the main conspirator Mohana Krishnan (killed in a police encounter on Nov 9, 2010 while trying to escape from custody), was found guilty on charges of criminal conspiracy, kidnapping for ransom, rape of girl child-cum-gang rape, murder and destruction of evidence.

The siblings were abducted on October 29, 2010 allegedly for ransom. However, later the girl was sexually abused and they were thrown into the PAP Canal near Udumalpet after a failed attempt to poison them by feeding milk laced with chemical cow dung powder.

Immediately after pronouncing him guilty, the judge asked Manoharan if he wished to speak anything on the quantum of punishment.

Manoharan uttered some incoherent words. The judge repeated the question twice. Manoharan fell silent and slowly shook his head signifying he did not wish to say anything.

The judge then asked his counsel A Sharmila whether she wanted to advance arguments over the quantum of sentence to be imposed on her client for which she sought time. Hearing on the case was then adjourned for a couple of hours.

When it resumed, the Special Public Prosecutor U Sankara Narayanan sought the highest punishment of death penalty for the convict saying the case fell under the “rarest of rare” category as laid down by the Supreme Court. He cited seven judgments delivered by the Apex Court and various High Courts to support his argument. Later, the defence counsel sought some more time to prepare her arguments, following which the judge adjourned the proceedings to Tuesday.

The case was mainly built on circumstantial evidences with the prosecution listing 121 witnesses to prove the culpability of the accused.



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