KOLLAM: Gay rights activist Anil Sadanandan, 39, was murdered by a suspected HIV positive youth and his friends, out of suspicion that he contracted the virus from the activist, police said.
A city police team led by ASP Thomson Jose arrested four youths in connection with the case.
The arrested were identified as Hyder Farook, 21, of Mayyanad, Priyan M, 23, of Kadappakkada, Vishnu C, 20, of Pattathanam and Nahas N, 21, of Vadakkevila.
The first three accused allegedly committed the murder, while the fourth accused Nahas was arrested for helping the trio.
According to police, Hyder Farook maintained a sexual relationship with Anil for the past several months. â€śHyder recently came to know from a third party that Anil was HIV positive and started believing that he contracted the disease also. It shattered him mentally and he wanted to take revenge against Anil for cheating him by keeping the details about his disease a secret. Hyder knew that he could not kill Anil, who was physically stronger, alone. He roped in petty burglar Priyan and his friend Vishnu, who was a polytechnic student. He did not reveal the murder plans to the duo and duped them by seeking help to rob Anil,â€ť police said.
Police said that the murder plot was devised by Hyder.â€ťHe introduced Priyan and Vishnu to Anil a couple of days before at the Kollam KSRTC bus stand, as he knew that Anil will not allow strangers in his room. The trio reached the spot in an auto-rickshaw borrowed from a friend at around 10.45 p m on Wednesday last. The trio deceived Anil in the name of group sex and entered his bedroom. Farook used a knife in his possession to slit Anilâ€™s throat, when the two others held his limbs tight. They stabbed him in his chest to ensure that he was dead,â€ť police said.
The trio escaped the scene after sprinkling chilli powder in the crime scene and they took laptop, mobile phone, cash, induction cooker and a digital camera. Police seized the knife used for the murder from a pond near the Umayanalloor Temple and the laptop from the mobile shop owned by fourth accused Nahas. Bruises were found from the body of the accused, possibly suffered during the scuffle with Anil.
A phone call from a newly activated connection helped the police to track down the
accused. The Cyber Cell found that the only call made from that connection was to Anilâ€™s number. Nahas helped Hyder to get the connection, which was taken using the ID proof of a Bengali native.
Police said that preliminary medical reports did not confirm that Anil was HIV positive.
The blood samples of Hyder was also sent to ascertain whether he was infected with HIV. Hyder works as a part time cook in hotels and occasionally as an auto-rickshaw driver.