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Cobra Killer Handed Two Life Sentences for Murdering his Wife With a Snake

Updated: Jan 7, 2022

An Indian man who had previously attempted to kill his wife with a venomous Russell's viper snake has today been given a double life sentence for killing her with a cobra whilst she recovered from the first attack.

Sooraj Kumar has been given a double life sentence in what has been described as the "rarest of rare cases".

Kumar initially set loose an extremely venomous Russell's viper snake on his 25-year-old wife Uthra, following the first attack Uthra was hospitalised for almost two months, confirmed prosecutors.

Whilst Uthra was recovering at her parents home, Kumar, her 28-year-old husband bought a cobra from a snake handler and threw it at his wife whilst she slept.

The venomous cobra bit Uthra and killed her, Sooraj Kumar was arrested by police last year and charged with her death.

Prosecutors have said that they believe this is the first time someone has been convicted of murdering someone using a snake as a weapon in India.

Sooraj Kumar pleaded not guilty to the murder, however police confirmed that his phone records showed he was in contact with snake handlers and he had been frequently watching snake videos online prior to killing his wife in March last year in Kollam in the southern state of Kerala.

Sooraj stayed in the room with his wife following the snake bite and then proceeded to continue with his normal routine the next day before Uthra's mother raised the alarm, said prosecutors.

The public prosecutor in the case had requested Sooraj receive the death penalty, he said: "The mode of execution and the diabolic plan of the accused to murder Uthra, his wife who was bedridden, makes it (the case) fall into the category of rarest of rare,"

Snake handler Vava Suresh said it was possible that Sooraj had 'inflicted pain on the reptile to provoke it to bite', the Hindustan Times newspaper quoted him as saying.

The snake that killed Uthra Kumar
Sooraj had bought the deadly cobra (shown above) from a snake-catcher from Kalluvathukkal

Uthra Kumar was from a wealthy family, however Sooraj was struggling financially and was looking to cash in on the assets owned by his wife's family.

The parents of Uthra started to become suspicious when Sooraj attempted to take control of her property not long after her death.

Sooraj's family have also been charged with conspiracy after it was reported that some of Uthra's gold was found buried near Sooraj's home just days after the murder.

We will keep you updated with progress on this case as more information is released, don't forget to follow us on Facebook for further updates.


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