Transgender, companion held for couple's murder

Transgender, companion held for couple's murder

Hiring staff without verifying antecedents proved costly for hoteliers in Cottonpet

Transgender, companion held for couple's murder

The City police on Tuesday claimed to have cracked the murder of the hotelier couple in Cottonpet by arresting a transgender along with a companion.Karthik alias Syed Ali, the helper at the hotel, is still at large. 

P K Thimmaiah alias Kiran, 24, a transgender hailing from Kodagu and Ramesh alias Ravi, 26, from Mangalore are the arrested. Both were living as companions, Police Commissioner Jyothi Prakash Mirji told a press meet here on Tuesday.  Thimmaiah was begging to make a living and befriended Ramesh.

The two came in contact with Syed Ali, 26, said to be a Bihari, and they formed a gang to commit robberies. All the three used to visit Mahalakshmi Hotel run by Pawan Kumar Maheshwari Sharma and his wife Babita Devi in Cottonpet. The trio observed that the hotelier couple stashed cash in the hotel and did not remit the money to a bank. They also noted that the couple employed helpers without verifying their antecedents.

The gang hatched a conspiracy to strike the hotel for big money, Mirji said. As part of the plan, Syed Ali befriended Pawan, identifying himself as Karthik from Assam. Ali offered to work as helper for the couple, and joined duty on July 29 (Sunday). Around 12.30 am on August 1, Ali opened the shutters of the hotel to allow Thimmaiah and Ramesh inside.

 They had to drop their plan as a Cheetah patrol vehicle passed by. They returned around 2 am to execute their plan. Ramesh stood outside to keep a watch, while  Thimmaiah went inside. Sources in the police said Ali attempted to molest Babita. As she raised an alarm, Pawan woke up.

 The intruders struck the couple with an iron rod. Priya, the five-year-old daughter of the couple, began to scream and she too was hit with the iron rod. Police officials said it was inconclusive whether the murders were premeditated or committed on the spur of the moment. Soon, a Hoysala vehicle approached the hotel and Ramesh sounded an alarm. All the three lied low, and later fled the place with Rs 48,300. The police have recovered the stolen cash. The call details of a PCO beside the hotel came in handy for the police.Priya is recovering at Nimhans and is under the care of Pawan’s brother.