In a shocking incident, a 42-year-old woman, who was alone at her home in the thickly populated TNHB Colony in Villapuram here, was allegedly smothered to death on Thursday afternoon. At least 12 sovereigns of gold jewellery, including a chain and two bangles, were missing.

Madurai district police said Mehar Banu, wife of Jamaal, was living on the first floor of the multi-storey apartment. Her husband was working in a private garment store.

When he returned home at 2 p.m., he saw his wife lying in a pool of blood and he alerted the police.

It is suspected that the crime took place between 10.30 a.m. and 1.30 p.m. Police officers who visited the scene of crime said that from the inputs gathered, it appeared that at least two persons had barged into the dwelling and committed the crime.

There were no major injuries on the victim, but the assailants had cut a vein on her wrist with some sharp tool before smothering her.

The jewels she had on her person were missing.

Whether the killers were known to the victim or not had to be examined, a police officer said.

The police could lift fingerprints from an almirah which had been disturbed by the assailants, but the valuables seemed to be intact, the officer said.

“We have to interrogate some of her relatives, who had spoken to her earlier in the day,” the police said.

Avaniapuram police have registered a case of murder for gain and are on the lookout for the accused.

Local body chief held

Kottampatti police arrested Manickam, Kacharayanpatti panchayat president, on Thursday. Madurai District Police said a case was registered against him after people lodged complaints that he had recommended houses built under various government welfare schemes in the names of deceased persons. Further investigation is on.

No clue in robbery case

In the robbery case reported in Karupayoorani police limits on Wednesday, there was no progress even after 24 hours, police said. A 58-year-old woman, who was alone at home in the suburban area, was attacked by a three-member gang which fled with her jewels weighing over 60 sovereigns. Special teams were on the lookout for the robbers.

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