As a mix of pessimism, rage and disappointment gripped Kerala after the Supreme Court verdict on Thursday that commuted the death sentence handed out to Govindachami in the Soumya rape and murder case, the accused has requested the court to shift him to a jail outside the state citing security. 
 

Also read: Soumya murder: Govindachami escapes noose


The counsel of Govindachami filed an appeal before the Supreme Court citing that Kerala is no longer safe for him. "There are chances that people might attack him in Kerala," B. A Aloor, his counsel told media after the verdict. Hence, Govindachami requested the court to shift him to jail in Andhra Pradesh or Tamil Nadu. 
 

Also read: Soumya murder: Kerala Govt. under fire for 'criminal lapse'
 

Passing a verdict in an appeal filed by Govindachami, the Supreme Court cancelled the death sentence awarded to him. 
 

Also read: Prosecution fumbles as apex court seeks evidence in Soumya murder case
 

Youth organisations protested in many parts of Kerala against the verdict. The Youth Congress took out a protest march in Thrissur on Thursday afternoon and burnt the effigy of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Law Minister AK Balan. Yuva Morcha, the youth wing of BJP, also burnt the effigy of Vijayan at Kozhikode. The protestors raised slogans against the government, Govindachami and his counsel BA Aloor. 

 

A group of Youth Congress activists had manhandled Govindachami in June 2011 when he was brought before the trial court at Thrissur in  Kerala. 

 

 Meanwhile, joining the chorus against the prosecution and investigators in the case, Aloor also stated that justice was denied to Soumya.  Supreme Court would have trusted the prosecution had they presented true pieces of evidence and avoided submitting fake documents, he said. "The police and the prosecution are to blame for denying justice to Soumya," he told media persons. 

 

Soumya, 23, was found in the bushes near a railway track at Shoranur in critical condition on 1 February 2011. Govindachami, 33, a physically challenged beggar, allegedly threw her off from the lady’s compartment of the train during a robbery attempt and raped her on the track. The victim succumbed to her injuries on 6 February.  The police arrested Govindachami, a single-handed vagabond, On February 3 from Cuddalore.  The incident triggered an outrage and raised serious safety concerns of female passengers in trains. 

Even though the prosecution argued that Govindachami was a dreaded criminal and that he raped and killed Soumya when she resisted a robbery bid, the Supreme Court gave the accused the benefit of doubt and annulled the death punishment.