The four accused in Telangana vet's rape-murder killed in a shootout

The police said they were killed in a shootout at around 6:30 am after they snatched weapons from policemen and tried to flee. As per the initial reports, they were taken to the crime scene where the four had allegedly burnt the veterinarian’s body

Swati SubhedarSwati Subhedar   6 Dec 2019 5:48 AM GMT

The four accused in Telangana vetThe spot where all four accused were killed by the Telangana Police. Pic: ANI

All four men accused in the gang rape and murder of a young veterinarian in Telangana were killed by the Telangana police in the early hours of Friday. As per the initial reports, at around 3 am, they were taken to Chattapally, around 60 kms from Hyderabad -- an area where the four had allegedly burnt the veterinarian's body -- for crime reconstruction.

The police said they were killed in a shootout at around 6:30 am after they snatched weapons from policemen and tried to flee. This was described by news media and social media users as an "encounter" -- a term used in India for extrajudicial killings. Gaon Connection is unable to independently corroborate the version of events.

Many social media users, who saw it as extrajudicial killing, nevertheless celebrated it as quick justice to the alleged rapists in a country where sexual offences against women often go unpunished due to tardy police investigation, judicial delays and social stigma in reporting rape and other assaults.

The story so far:

The 26-year-old veterinary doctor's body was found in an underpass on Hyderabad outskirts on November 28. On November 27, she was on her way back home from her workplace. She parked her vehicle at a toll plaza and went to a dermatologist as she had taken an appointment.

When she came back to the spot at around 9:15 pm, she realised that the rear wheel of her scooter was flat. She called her sister, who instructed her to reach the toll plaza. The veterinarian then told her sister to be on the call saying she was feeling scared as there were lorries parked nearby and a few men around her were behaving suspiciously. After 15 minutes, her mobile got "switched off".

The four accused have been identified as Mohammed Arif (26), Jollu Shiva (20), Jollu Naveen (20) and Chintakunta Chennakeshavulu (20), who worked as truck drivers and lorry cleaners. The four had earlier in the evening spotted the doctor parking her scooter. They deflated the tyre of her scooter and waited nearby.

The veterinary doctor arrived at the spot and found the tyre deflated. The four accused allegedly offered to help her. They dragged her to a secluded spot close to a toll plaza and raped her. It is said that the victim died due to suffocation and the accused later burnt her body. The victim's body was found the next day on November 28 on the Hyderabad-Bengaluru national highway.

Nationwide protests had erupted after her charred body was found. The four accused were arrested on November 29 for raping and killing the woman by smothering her and later burning her body. The four were sent to judicial custody for 14 days. On December 4, the Telangana government had issued orders for setting up a fast track court to try the four men accused of the gang rape and murder.

It's a developing story ... Gaon Connection will update the story.

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