S. Sushma, the BBM student who allegedly hired professionals to kill her former boyfriend Manjunath, was granted interim bail until June 21 by a lower court here on Saturday so that she can write her upcoming examinations.
On days when she has no exam, she has to mark her attendance with the police, said Deputy Commissioner of Police H.S. Revanna. Although the 22-year-old was arrested along with four others on June 5, the city police announced the arrest only on Friday evening.
The target of the May 11 attack was Manjunath but he managed to escape, leaving his friend Hussain (24) in the clutches of the killers who bludgeoned him to death and dumped his body in a farm off the Doddaballapur-Devanahalli Road.
A resident of Basaveshwaranagar, Sushma's on-off relationship with Manjunath eventually fizzled out a few months ago. Following their break-up, he allegedly began harassing her with Hussain's help to coerce her into rekindling their relationship.
The two allegedly threatened to leak videos and photographs of the couple during happier times. In her confessional statement, Sushma also told the police that Manjunath and Hussain had threatened to destroy her face with acid if she did not marry the former.
Boys in the hood
On the lookout for a quick-fix solution to the incessant blackmail and harassment, Sushma hatched the conspiracy along with her neighbours Ajay Kumar (20), Deepak (19), Lakshman (21) and Abhishek (19). She allegedly paid them Rs. 50,000 as advance with the promise of another Rs. 4.5 lakh once the job was done.
“Her family recently sold some of their property. That is where she got the money to pay the killers,” Mr. Revanna said. “She is a bright girl; good in studies. Her family, especially her parents, are well-meaning and simple people. Life could have been very different for her if she had not committed this blunder,” said an officer.
Echoing this sentiment, Mr. Revanna said: “This was such a senseless thing to do. All she had to do was approach the police and file a complaint against Manjunath and Hussain.”
Mr. Revanna said there have been several such cases where victims of blackmail, abuse and violence have taken the law into their own hands.
“Perhaps, they are too embarrassed to share with the police the information that was being used for blackmail. But isn't temporary embarrassment better than the prospect of a life behind bars?” he reflected.
Keywords: murder case