The main accused in the Esther Anuhya rape and murder case has been convicted
Special public prosecutor Raja Thakare examined 39 witnesses in the case including the victim’s father, Jonathan Pradsad.
Defence advocate Prakash Salsingekar examined four witnesses including media personnel in an attempt to prove that Sanap’s test identification parade was conducted after his pictures were already published.
Anuhya (23) was working as a techie in the city and lived at the YWCA hostel. A native of Andhra Pradesh, she had boarded a train from Vijaywada to LTT on January 4 last year and was expected to arrive in the city the following morning. However, her father’s attempts to contact her on her mobile phone did not yield results, forcing him to file a missing complaint with the Vijaywada Railway Police.
The father then arrived in the city to look for his daughter and another missing complaint was lodged at Kurla police station. The last signal of Anuya’s phone was traced to Bhandup.
In his statement to the court, Prasad said that he began to look for his child along the Eastern Express Highway with the help of relatives. On January 16, last year a badly burnt body was found. With the help of the finger ring present on it, Prasad identified the body as that of his daughter.
The matter was handed over to the Crime Branch on March 2, 2014. CCTV allegedly revealed that Anuhya had arrived at LTT but had left with a man who was later identified as Sanap. A resident of Karve Nagar, Kanjurmarg, Sanap was arrested. The investigators claimed that Anuhya had Inclueded him after he had agreed to drop her home on his bike.
The prosecution witnesses were four who deposed before the court and identified Sanap as being at the station on the intervening night of January 4 and 5, 2015. Two of these witnesses also told the court that they had seen Sanap with the victim too.
The prosecution further alleged that the CCTV footage acted as corroborative evidence. It further argued that several of Anuhya’s personal belongings which she had carried as part of her baggage on the train were recovered at the instance of the accused.