Man sentenced to life for killing wife using cobra sent to TVM Central jail

A day after a lower court at Kollam district sentenced a man guilty of killing his wife by getting her bitten by a cobra, he was brought to the Thiruvananthapuram Central jail on Thursday.

Suraj, who was arrested in May last year, was an undertrial prisoner till Wednesday at the Kollam district jail and on Thursday morning was brought to the jail here.

The jail authorities decided to keep him under a week’s observation on account of the Covid protocols and then he will be moved into a cell.

On Wednesday, he was punished with 17 years imprisonment and then followed by a double life imprisonment and a fine of Rs five lakh.

Suraj was the husband of 25-year-old Uthara, who was bitten by a cobra. Reacting to the verdict, Manimeghala, the mother of Uthara, said they were disappointed by the verdict as they had wished for capital punishment. She said the family will go in for an appeal against this verdict.

Suraj’s counsel said they will also file an appeal against the verdict. Suraj was seen telling the waiting media, when he was being taken away from the courtroom, that all the charges against him are false.

The incident took place on May 6, 2020. On May 7, Uthara’s mother discovered her body at their house in Anchal, some 70 kms from here.

The victim’s mother said Uthara and Suraj had gone to their room after dinner. On May 7, Suraj, who was a late riser, woke up early and went out. When Uthara didn’t wake up, her mother went to her room and found Uthara lying unconscious.

The snake, which was still in the room, was killed by Uthara’s parents when they returned home from the hospital after their daughter was declared dead.

On May 24, the police arrested Suraj and his associate Suresh, a professional snake catcher for hatching a conspiracy to use a snake to kill her.

After the police began the probe, they exhumed the cobra carcass that was buried in a pit and sent the carcass for forensic examination.

The probe also revealed that Suraj had apparently made several attempts earlier using snakes to kill Uthara.

Her parents said in the first instance of a snake bite on March 2, Uthara was at her husband’s home in Adoor. After recovering from the snake bite, she had shifted to her parental home in Anchal.

According to the police, Suresh had given Suraj the snakes. He first provided a poisonous viper for Rs 10,000. After the first attempt failed, Suresh supplied him a cobra for Rs 10,000.

The one-year-old son of the couple has been handed over to the parents of Uthara.