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Priest murdered in Malleswaram seminary

Bangalore: April 2, 2013 DH News Service 1:43 IST
Brutal: City Police Commissioner B G Jyothiprakash Mirji and Archbishop of Bangalore Bernard Moras at the St Peter's  Pontifical Seminary in Malleswaram, where Father K J Thomas, 65, (inset), was murdered late Sunday night. dh photo
A senior Christian priest was found brutally murdered at a seminary in Malleswaram early Monday morning.

The body of Fr K J Thomas, 64, the Rector of St Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, was lying in a pool of blood inside a coffee room adjacent to his office-cum-residence.
The motive behind the murder is yet to be ascertained.

Fr Patrick, the procurator of the seminary, was the first to discover the body and inform the Yeshwantpur police at about 6:15 am.

An officer handling the case told Deccan Herald that the assailants had struck Thomas on the forehead with a blunt weapon, leaving a deep cut on his nose. There were no other injuries on the body.

The officer said blood stains in the rector’s room and along the corridor indicated that the priest had probably tried to escape from the assailants.
The killers might have murdered him in the corridor and dumped his body in the coffee room. Shoe prints in the corridor indicate the involvement of at least three people, he said.

‘None heard anything’


While the assailants had a free run on the campus, police find it difficult to believe that none heard any commotion, especially when they had even broken open a grill door. Police said the gang may have prowled around the seminary for at least two hours.

The 150-odd students on the campus had left for their homes last week for summer vacation. Thomas and Patrick were the only two men staying at the seminary on Sunday night. One security guard had been posted at the front gate and other at the rear.
Security guard Mann Singh of Padmashree Security Services, who was at the front gate, said he saw nobody or heard anything that night and that he had been sleeping in his kiosk, as it was raining heavily.

No forcible entry

Police said that while there were no signs of forcible entry into Thomas’ room, the assailants had tried to force open the adjacent room where Patrick stayed.

Patrick told the police that he heard some sounds at his door at around 2:30 am, but did not venture out. However, officers who questioned Patrick and security guard Singh said the two had made contradictory statements. Police Commissioner B G Jyothiprakash Mirji said five special teams, including that of the Central Crime Branch, had been formed to apprehend the killers.

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