Thiruvananthapuram: A Kerala Police team investigating the bizarre murder of a housewife using a poisonous cobra, exhumed the carcass of the killer reptile on Tuesday and sent it for forensic examination.
The incident took place on May 6 night, when 25-year-old Uthara Suraj was killed. The next morning, her mother discovered her body in their house in Anchal, some 70km from Thiruvananthapuram.
On May 24, the police arrested Uthara's husband, Suraj, and his associate Suresh, a professional snake catcher, for hatching a conspiracy to murder her by snake bite.
The snake was later killed by Uthara's parents, after they got back from hospital; they had taken their daughter there for first aid but she had been declared dead.
Earlier in the day, a team exhumed the cobra carcass that was buried in a pit in their home on May 7. Speaking to the media, Hari Sankar, Kollam (rural) SP, said it was a well-hatched conspiracy and the case is a challenge for the probe team as this could well be a first of its kind case.
"There is no third person involved at the place of crime. Uthara has died and then there is the accused. In cases like these there would be lot of importance to circumstantial evidences and that's a challenge," said Hari Sankar.
The exhumed carcass will be examined by experienced veterinarians and forensic experts.
The one-year-old son of the couple was handed over to Uthara's parents.
Suraj apparently had made several attempts using snakes to end Uthara's life. Her parents said in the first instance of a snake bite on March 2, she was at her husband's home in Adoor. After recovering, she had moved to her parental home in Anchal.
Her parents filed a complaint on May 21 at the Anchal police station, calling hers an unnatural death. Last Saturday, the Crime Branch took Suraj, Suresh and a relative of Uthara into custody.
According to the police, Suresh had provided Suraj the snakes. He first provided a poisonous viper for Rs10,000. After the first failed attempt, Suresh supplied him a cobra for Rs 10,000 (Dh485).
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, she added.
Suraj's parents continue to plead that their son is innocent and lot of rumours are being circulated.