22-year-old dalit Sankar was killed in full public view.
Tirupur/Chennai: Six persons were sentenced to death by a court here on Tuesday for involvement in the honour killing of 22-year-old dalit named Sankar in full public view in nearby Udumalpet in March last year. Those sentenced to death included the father of the Hindu woman Kausalya, who had married Sankar despite opposition from her family.
In the case that churned the conscience of the civil society after the CCTV footage of the brutal hacking of the young couple by a hired gang of three on March 13 went viral, the Tirupur Principal District and Sessions Judge Alamelu Natarajan also sentenced another accused to double life term and another accused to five years imprisonment. She, however, acquitted Kausalya’s mother, her maternal uncle and another relative. The video showed the three gangsters hacking the couple with sickles and riding away on a two-wheeler even as the public stood shocked and scared. While Sankar died within hours, Kausalya survived despite fractured skull and heavy loss of blood. Recovering from the wounds and the trauma of brutal widowhood, the young woman has since emerged as a brave campaigner against caste oppression. And she remained, throughout the sensational trial in the special SC/ST court, the prosecution’s main stay despite family pressures, intimidation and threat of social stigma for staying loyal to the memory of her dalit husband.
“My mother threatened me repeatedly that I will be killed, that she will kill me. She told me I was better off dead than be married to Sankar… My father was totally against this marriage”, Kausalya told the judge, who was taken through the shocking trail of evidence that her father Chinnasamy had left behind while he plotted the kill with his spouse Annalakshmi and brother-in-law Pandi Durai, and the hired killers.
When he was pronounced guilty, Chinnasamy pleaded for lighter sentence to which the judge responded asking why he thought he deserved leniency after planning such a gruesome murder of a daughter he had loved so much.