Kerala woman raped and murdered, migrant worker from Assam held
A migrant labourer from Assam has been arrested for allegedly raping a 42-year-old Kerala woman and later killing her by smashing her face beyond recognition with “at least thirty” blows from a spade. The accused tried to damage the CCTV camera that recorded his barbaric act but that couldn’t prevent the police from retrieving some crucial footage that eventually led to his arrest, said police.
The body of the victim was found in front of a local shop in Perumbavoor near Kochi on Wednesday. The damaged CCTV camera that helped nail the culprit was also installed nearby.
According to the police, the accused Umar Ali bludgeoned the victim’s face with a spade after raping her. The dead woman, a native of Karuppumpadi in Ernakulam, was estranged from her family and lived alone in Perumbavoor--an industrial town and home to a large number of migrant labourers, mostly from the Northeast India.
The motive of the crime and the exact circumstances of the incident are still not very clear as questioning of the accused continues. The police say the victim had at least 30 wounds on her face and the spade used in the crime was recovered from the spot.
“We are questioning him with the help of a translator. We will get more information in a couple of days,” a senior police officer of Ernakulam district said.
This was the third murder with links to migrant workers this year, however, the 2016 case of rape and murder of a Kochi law student had made most headlines and is remembered as one of the most brutal crimes involving migrant labourer in recent times. Ameerlul Islam, who hailed from Assam, was convicted and sentenced to death for the law student’s rape and murder.
Several protests against migrant labourers were held in the state following the 2016 case. At least 30 lakh migrant labourers are estimated to be living in Kerala, which offers better wages and good working conditions.