ISRO arm National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) scientist S Suresh Kumar, who was found dead in his flat in Hyderabad on October 1, was murdered by a lab technician who bore a grudge over the latter not paying money after gay sex, police said on Friday.
The police cracked the murder case with the arrest of the 39-year-old technician, who was having sexual relations with the deceased.
Suresh Kumar, 56, was found murdered in his flat in Ameerpet area in the heart of the city on Tuesday.
He was associated with NRSC, which was earlier known as the National Remote Sensing Agency (NRSA). After the conversion in 2008, it became a part of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
Police said accused Janagama Srinivas stabbed the scientist to death during an argument over payment after sexual activity.
Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar told reporters that the accused confessed to the crime after police started questioning him as he was regularly visiting the scientist.
He said recovery of Suresh Kumar's two gold rings, Rs 10,000 cash, mobile phones of both the deceased and the accused and locking of flat's door from outside were crucial evidence linking the crime to Srinivas.
The browser history of the mobile phone of the accused showed he was preparing to murder Suresh Kumar. Blood samples, hair and finger print at the crime scene and CCTV footage were the other scientific evidence which helped the police identify and arrest the killer.
Deputy Commissioner of Police B. Sumathi said Srinivas, working with Vijaya Diagnostic Centre, was visiting Suresh Kumar's house regularly to collect blood samples.
Srinivas, a native of Telangana's Karimnagar district, was living in a hostel in Hyderabad. Suresh Kumar, a technical expert of NRSA, was staying alone and was and well settled.
"His loneliness and his economic condition induced the suspect to come closer to him in the name of blood collection. Exploiting his loneliness and urge to perform unnatural act, the suspect expected monetary favours in return. As he did not get expected amounts, he hatched a plan to kill him," a police officer said.
The police officer said the accused was well prepared to commit the crime as he browsed the Internet to see how murders are committed. He purchased a knife, came to Suresh Kumar's flat on the night of September 30 and spent time with him. After performing the act, an argument ensued over money during which he attacked Suresh Kumar with the knife.
The crime came to light when the scientist's wife Indira Suresh Kumar, who works at a bank in Chennai, was not able to connect with him over phone. She asked her relatives in Hyderabad to go to the flat but they found it locked from outside.
She rushed to Hyderabad and informed the police and in the presence of police, the door was broken open. Suresh Kumar, a native of Kerala who was working at NRSC for 20 years, was found lying dead in a pool of blood.