A 30-year-old construction labourer committed suicide by setting himself ablaze after killing his wife and three minor children by poisoning them in the wee hours of Thursday. The incident took place at Jalaki Vasti in Lokmanaya Nagar, Kothrud.
The deceased were identified as Parshuram Madiappa Kalkanthi, his wife Jamuna (25) and their children Payal (7), Manisha (5) and Karan (3). Officials from Kothrud police station recovered Jamuna and Payal from their residence, while Parshuram, Manisha and Karan’s bodies were found at a dumping ground, just 100 metres away from the slum.
“The incident came to light at 3.30 am on Thursday. Parshuram’s elder brother Sharanappa, who woke up to answer the nature’s call, and saw the door of slum open and was stunned to Jamuna and Payal lying on the floor with froth oozing out of their mouths,” Police Inspector Kalyanrao Vidhate said.
Vidhate said Sharanappa saw smoke billowing from the dumping ground and headed in its direction. On reaching the spot he discovered Parshuram’s burnt body, and next to him were Manisha and Karan’s bodies with froth oozing from their mouths. Manisha’s body had burnt partially.
Sharanappa immediately alerted his brothers and neighbours, and informed police officials. “On Wednesday evening, Parshuram had come to the house and looked disturbed. He said that someone had cast a black magic spell on him and his family. He also said that somebody was going to kill him and remove his kidneys,” Parshuram’s mother-in-law Kasturaba Kamble said.
Kamble said she tried to pacify Parshuram and asked him not worry. “I told him that I would take him to doctor tomorrow (Thursday). I did not have the slightest idea that he would kill the entire family with his own hands,” Kamble said yesterday.
Some of the neighbours
said a few days ago an astrologer had visited Parshuram’s house and had told something following which he became restless. “The astrologer was again spotted at his house two days ago. He was asking for some sugar and grain from Parshuram,” a neighbour said.
Vidhate said prima facie it appeared to be a case of superstition, but the police officials were investigating it from all possible angles. They have also recovered an empty can of kerosene from the dumping ground.
Parshuram, who hails from Karnataka, has been residing in Jalaki Vasti for the past several years with his five brothers.