Ernakulam court on Thursday awarded death sentence to Ameerul Islam in brutal rape and murder of Jisha, a Dalit law student of Kerala last year.
30-year-old Jisha, who hailed from a poor family, was raped and brutally assaulted using sharp-edged weapons before being murdered at her house.
The court on Tuesday held Ameerul Islam, a labourer guilty after examining as many as 100 witnesses during the trial which began in April last year.
Islam, who had left Perumbavoor soon after allegedly committing the crime, was arrested from Kancheepuram in neighbouring Tamil Nadu, 50 days after the gruesome incident.
The incident was in focus during the state assembly polls campaign last year with political parties attacking the then Congress-led UDF regime for tardy progress in the probe and failure to nab culprits.
The LDF government, after assuming power on May 25 last year, changed the investigation team and entrusted the probe to ADGP B Sandhya in its first cabinet meeting itself.
More than 100 police personnel had questioned over 1,500 people. Finger prints of over 5,000 people were also examined by the SIT personnel who went through over 20 lakh telephonic conversations before reaching Islam.
Police have said a blood stained footwear found from a canal near the victim’s house was one of the key evidence in identifying the culprit.