A 33-year-old man killed a girl student after setting her ablaze and then immolated himself at Padikasuvaithanpatti near here on the morning of Tuesday, allegedly after she rejected his proposal for marriage.

While the girl died on the spot, the man, B. Aathisakthi Kuzhanthaivelu, succumbed to burns at the Government Hospital in Sivakasi in the evening.

Police said that the 17-year-old girl, a Plus Two student, along with her younger sister, had come out of her house to go to school at around 8.15 a.m. Her parents had gone to work by then.

The man, who worked as a mill hand, forced the girl into his house next door. Her sister raised an alarm, the Deputy Superintendent of Police (Srivilliputtur), S. Sakthivel, said. As neighbours gathered outside the house, he set her ablaze and smoke started bellowing out. The girl’s mother had told the police that the man shouted at the girl even as she was screaming for help, Mr. Sakthivel said.

The police suspect that the man had kept kerosene ready in the house as everything happened very quickly. The Vanniyampatti police are investigating.

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