Abhay Modani case: Lifer for kidnapper-murderers

The body of Class X student Abhay Modani, suffocated to death by the duct tape his kidnappers had placed over his face, dumped in a busy area near the Secunderabad railway station, presented a horrifying image.

The Nampally criminal court on Thursday handed out life sentences to the three men who had been responsible for the gruesome crime, committed on March 16, 2016.

The motive behind the crime is just as startling. Indugamalli Sheshu Kumar (20), Pondara Ravi (21) and Namburi Mohan (23) kidnapped the boy because they wanted to attend dance classes that would give them a boost in the Telugu movie industry.

According to Shayinayatganj police, Sheshu got a job as a helper to Abhay's elderly neighbour in 2015. Sheshu and Abhay soon became friends.

Meanwhile, Sheshu, Ravi and Mohan were trying their chances at the movie industry but to no avail. They found that an obstacle was the lack of dance-training that they received.

To make some money for the classes, they hatched a plan inspired by the movie Oka Romantic Prema katha.

One day, when Abhay was running an errand on his scooter, Sheshu asked him for a lift. Taking over the scooter from the boy, Sheshu took Abhay to an apartment that Sheshu, Ravi and Mohan had rented and told the boy he has been kidnapped.

The men called Abhay's family and demanded a ransom of Rs 10 crore.

When Abhay started pleading with them, they panicked and covered his face with a duct tape, which proved fatal.

The suffocation led to his death, and the kidnappers, realising what they had done, packed the body in a carton, hired an auto, and left the body near the railway station.

Reacting to the sentence, Abhay's father Rajkumar Modani said justice has been done to his son.

"While no one can bring back my son, the punishment will prove to be a deterrent for those like Seshu to stay away from crime," he said.

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