She and her relatives expected death sentence for Ravikumar

Venu, mother of the engineering student Krishnaveni, was upset that her son-in-law Chelluboina Ravikumar was not awarded death sentence for murdering her daughter in broad daylight. She was inconsolable as she spoke to the media after the judgment was delivered in the sensational case on Wednesday, recalling how she brought up her two daughters, the cruel harassment Krishnaveni was subjected to by her husband and in-laws, the brutal way she was killed and the death of her (Krishnaveni) father three months later unable to digest the murder. “Capital punishment is the right sentence. I am not sure if he remains in jail. He might come out after some years, marry another girl and kill her too,” said Krishnaveni’s mother.

Death sentence would have acted as a deterrent for those harassing and killing women, Krishnaveni’s relatives and friends felt. They are likely to approach High Court seeking death sentence.

A large number of relatives and friends of Krishnaveni’s parents were present on the District Courts Complex premises when Judge of the Mahila Sessions Court N. Raja Prasad Baba pronounced his judgment. Ravikumar (30) was sentenced to life imprisonment and pay a fine of Rs. 2,000 under Sec. 302 of IPC and his family members Suryanarayana, Guramma, M. Syamala Devi and D. Prasanna Kumari were each sentenced to undergo three years imprisonment and a pay a fine of Rs. 5,000. Four other accused were let off as the prosecution failed to prove charges against them.

Krishnaveni was killed by her husband in less than seven months after her marriage in August 2010. Ravikumar was a taxi driver and Krishnaveni was in her third year engineering course. Soon after marriage Ravikumar and other members of his family started harassing her demanding more dowry and a share in her parents’ house. One month before she was killed, Krishnaveni moved to her parents’ house unable to bear the harassment and Ravikumar was still harassing. He had allegedly hatched a plan with four of his friends to kill her and on March 1, 2011 he accosted Krishnaveni on the Kalabharthi road while she was returning from college. After harassing her for some time, he picked up a knife and slashed her throat, killing her instantaneously.

Krishnaveni’s murder drew wide condemnation by the people, students and women organisations and the police had a tough time to control the emotional crowd that gathered near the Three Town Police Station when Ravikumar and others were produced at a press conference. Ravikumar was picked up from the house of his friend’s sister in Vizianagaram. The Task Force Police, led by SI Tirupati Rao traced him there with the help of signals from his mobile phone.

Petition dismissed

Ravikumar’s petition to the High Court and later to the Supreme Court, during the trial of the case, to transfer his case to another court or to change the Judge of the Mahila court was dismissed.

The prosecution was conducted by Public Prosecutor of the District and Sessions Judge’s Court M. Venugopala Rao, who was made Special P.P. for this case in the Mahila Court. Three Town Inspector Krishna Varma investigated the case.

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