Staff Reporter

HYDERABAD: The mystery behind the murder of a junior artiste was unravelled with the arrest of two persons, including a film production manager on Sunday.

Police said the production manager, B. Srinivasa Ravi Kumar Chowdary (38), and his accomplice K. Vasavi (30), killed junior artiste V. Ananthalaxmi (34) for gold jewellery. On February 28, they invited the artiste to their house in Moosapet for ‘discussing’ a role in an upcoming film. A native of Ramchandrapuram in the neighbouring Medak district, Ananthalaxmi met them. They later consumed liquor.

After she got intoxicated, Kumar throttled her to death and removed her gold ornaments. Ravi and Vasavi then purchased a gunny bag, stuffed the body in it and dumped it in a nearby nala on the same night to conceal her identity, Task Force DCP, V.B. Kamalasan Reddy told reporters on Sunday.

On the next day, they had gone to Nellore and sold the gold and jewellery for Rs.20,000 and returned to the city after a couple of days. Since then Ananthalaxmi remained untraceable and her relatives lodged a complaint with Ramchandrapuram police.

Based on a tip-off, the police picked up Kumar for questioning in connection with the case. He confessed to having committed the crime along with Vasavi. The police traced the highly decomposed body of the artiste in the nala in Moosapet. An autopsy was also conducted at the spot.

Kumar, who was produced before the media, told reporters that he and his accomplice murdered Ananthalaxmi for gold jewellery.

Mr. Kamalasan Reddy said the missing case would now be altered to that of murder for gain. The junior artiste played several roles in Telugu films and TV serials, while Kumar too acted in films like ‘Mother India’, ‘Inspector Jhansi’, ‘Allari Alludu’ and ‘Alajadi’, besides a few TV serials.