Mahanand Naik who was called the ‘dupatta killer’ after the police charged him of strangulating 16 young girls over a period of 15 years, was convicted for rape and the sentence will be pronounced on Tuesday.
Mahanand Naik was earlier acquitted in three murder cases as the prosecution had failed to establish his involvement and questions were raised whether the police had merely dumped unsolved cases on Mahanand.
Home Minister Ravi Naik had sought to exonerate the police by arguing that the acquittals were in old cases where evidence was difficult to find and had expressed confidence that Mahanand Naik would be convicted in the more recent cases.
The sordid saga infolded when his wife’s friend from Shiroda complained to the police of rape by Mahanand over a period of three years by blackmailing her. It was while investigating into this complaint that Mahanand confessed to having killed one Yogita Naik and subsequently more skeletons kept tumbling out of the cupboard.
While Mahanand Naik has been found guilty of rape and the sentence will be pronounced on Tuesday, the murder cases against him are still continuing in the courts.