Seven more prosecution witnesses in the Sankararaman murder case, in which Kanchi Sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswathi is the prime accused, turned hostile during the trial in a court here on Thursday.

Seven of the eight witnesses examined before Principal District and Sessions Judge D. Krishnaraja turned hostile as they contradicted their earlier statements made to the police, Special Public Prosecutor N Devadoss told PTI.

So far, 67 prosecution witnesses have been examined and 36 had turned hostile.

Sankararaman, Manager of Varadaraja Perumal temple in Kancheepuram, was murdered in the temple premises on September 3, 2004. Jayendra Saraswathi and his junior Vijayendra Saraswathi have been charged under IPC sections of 120-B (conspiracy) and 302 (murder) in the case.

The Supreme Court had shifted the trial to Puducherry in October, 2005 on a petition by Jayendra Saraswathi.

Of the 24 accused, only eleven were present during the trial in the court today and the two seers were among the absentees.

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