In an important breakthrough in the investigation into the abduction and brutal killing of P. Naga Vaishnavi, the city police on Thursday produced Morla Srinivas and Jagadeesh before the magistrate after registering a case against them on the charge of killing Vaishnavi and her car driver Lakshman Rao on January 30.

Though a case was said to have been registered also against Vaishnavi’s relative P. Venkata Rao Goud, who was believed to have hatched the conspiracy to eliminate her, the police did not produce him in the court. They maintained that they did not have him in their custody.

The police produced Srinivas as the first accused and Jagadeesh as the second accused . They registered cases under Sections 302 (murder), 363 (kidnapping) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.

The duo, in masks, was produced before the First Additional Metropolitan Magistrate, M.R. Satyanarayana, at his residence amid tight security after the close of working hours of the court. The judge ordered 14-day remand (till February 18) for the accused.

The arrests came a few hours after Andhra Pradesh Home Minister P. Sabitha Indra Reddy called on the family members of Vaishnavi at their residence in Ayodhyanagar. She paid floral tributes at the photographs of Vaishnavi and her father Prabhakara Rao.

Consoling Prabhakara Rao’s widow Narmada Devi and her two sons for about 30 minutes, Ms. Sabitha assured that the government would provide them the required support and security.

The Home Minister asserted that the culprits responsible for the heinous crime would not be able to escape from the clutches of justice. The government would bring them to book, however influential they might be.

Minister’s assurance

Ms. Sabitha also paid a visit to the residence of driver Lakshman Rao and comforted his widow. She promised to provide a house under one of the government schemes as a humanitarian gesture. If possible, she would be offered a job in the city police.