Both the victims of the alleged ‘human sacrifices’ met their gory end in a day or two or even on the same day they had gone missing, police said.
The first victim Rosli had gone missing on June 6 and the second victim Padmam on September 26. Missing cases were registered by Kalady police in Ernakulam Rural and Kadavanthra police in Kochi city on August 17 and September 27, respectively.
“We have taken the days they had gone missing as the benchmark. They had travelled (to where they were murdered) on the same day and were murdered on the same night or in a day or two since there was no evidence of the victims having stayed there for long. They were murdered in such a cruel way that it is best left unexplained lest it shocks the conscience,” said C. H. Nagaraju, District Police Chief (Kochi City).
Asked on what pretext Shafi had led the victims to their shocking death, Mr. Nagaraju would only say that financial promises were involved. Reports were doing the rounds that they were promised up to ₹10 lakhs. Shafi was also paid though it is not yet known how much.
Police are also probing whether more women had been ‘sacrificed’ in a similar manner and whether more people were involved in the murders. All the three accused – Shafi aka Rasheed and a couple, Bhagaval Singh and wife Laila – were all directly involved in the murder. Asked about Laila’s role, Mr. Nagaraju said that she was also a direct participant.