A man who was found guilty of killing his wife using a cobra was on Wednesday sentenced to double life term.
Calling it one of the rarest of rare cases, a court in Kerala’s Kollam spared the death sentence considering the age of the husband, P Sooraj. The court said it will send a wrong message to people with criminal minds.
The 32-year-old man has to undergo the sentences separately, the court said. It added that life sentence will start only after 17 years, which means he has to spend rest of his life in jail.
On Monday, the court convicted Sooraj of murder for letting loose a cobra on his wife Uthra while she was sleeping, and forcing it to bite her.
The 25-year-old Uthra had undergone treatment for an earlier snake bite. She recovered from the first bite, but didn’t survive the second one — this time from a cobra.
The prosecution had pushed for capital punishment for Sooraj. Uthra’s parents were also unhappy with the verdict, and will move Kerala high court for death sentence.
Sooraj had tried to kill Uthra with a viper in February last year, but didn’t succeed in his attempt. So he tried the more venomous cobra this time.
Uthra’s parents had filed a police complaint in May last year, two days after their daughter’s death. They alleged that Sooraj and his family members used to harass Uthra for more dowry, despite the fact that they had given 90 sovereigns of gold, Rs 5 lakh cash and a car.