: Sixteen years ago, a college student from Kerala killed his girlfriend and fled to Dubai. The Sampangiramanagar police arrested him here Tuesday when the man, now 40, returned to India for a pilgrimage.

Rajeshkumar Kaimal, who was absconding ever since he was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2008, was involved with his classmate, Pooja Kher, when both were management students in a college in Sampangiramanagar here. However, there was tension in their relationship as she had other friends on the campus. The police said Kaimal frequently warned Kher on this count but his girlfriend ignored his demand.

In 1996, on the College Day, Kaimal went to her hostel room and stabbed Kher to death. The police then filed a chargesheet against him in a lower court which acquitted him in 2001. Thereafter he escaped to Dubai. The State appealed in High Court which overturned the lower court’s verdict, sentencing Kaimal to life imprisonment in 2008. Several warrants were issued to trace him but the police were unable to nab him.

Finally, Kaimal, a native of Sreemangalam Kunnathymakara Post, East Othera, Pathanamthitta, in Kerala, was tracked down when he came to India recently on a pilgrimage. He was arrested and remanded in judicial custody.