Manik Konai (45) and Hemanth Mondal (26) were bludgeoned to death with a hammer while they were asleep, allegedly by their roommate Swapan Konai (48) at Ramalakatte area under the Bantwal Rural police station limits early on Thursday morning. The motive behind the murders is said to be personal enmity that developed after a petty quarrel between Swapan Konai and the deceased.

All three are migrant workers from Murshidabad district of West Bengal and were employed at a water purification plant run by the Karnataka Urban Development and Coastal Environment Management Project (KUDCEMP) at Thumbe Ramalakatte. They were staying in quarters provided by their employers at the site for the last four months.

According to police sources, the accused first killed Manik Konai and then Hemanth Mondal who was sleeping in the adjoining room, at around 4.30 a.m. All the other workers were then fast asleep. However, Hemanth Mondal managed to raise an alarm that alerted another worker, Prahlad. The accused also made a failed bid to attack Prahlad who escaped and alerted other workers at the site.

Swapan Konai was finally overpowered by other workers at around 5 a.m. and was tied to a corner. The workers then called their work supervisor who in-turn summoned the local police. The accused was produced before a local court in Bantwal and has been remanded in judicial custody. The bodies of the deceased have been placed under the care of the Government Wenlock Hospital. The relatives of the deceased are yet to arrive from West Bengal to claim the bodies.

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