Goa police on Thursday claimed that eight out of ten dead bodies found across the state in the span of three days were murders, and said it has made an important breakthrough in at least four deaths with the arrest of a man in this connection.
In a late night operation, police arrested a slum-dweller, Babu Reddy, and detained some others for questioning in connection with the killing a family of four including a 35-year-old woman who was also sexually abused before the murder.
"The gang involved in petty theft of scrapped material murdered all the four including two kids when they resisted the rape of the woman," Superintendent of Police Atmaram Deshpande told reporters in Panaji.
While Deshpande refused to divulge the name of the arrested person, a senior police officer confirmed that one Babu Reddy was arrested after a search operation in hutments at Chimbel, an area notorious for allegedly sheltering goons, adjacent to Panaji city.
Replying to a question, Deshpande ruled out any link of the arrested person to other killings.
"Other gang members were detained and interrogated by a special team of officers," he said.
"The family of four were rag pickers and the gang had come to rob the scrap. They tried to sexually abuse the woman when they found her scantily clad and when others objected, they were hit to death," the SP said.
Police said there were signs of head injury on all the bodies that were fished out from a creek running through Panaji city.
Deshpande said that the postmortem on the three bodies was conducted by a special panel of doctors who confirmed that two were smothered while one was strangulated.
Meanwhile, police said that four other bodies found since Monday were also the cases of murder.
The recovery of bodies had triggered a scare across the coastal state.
Police said that two dead bodies found at Morjim on October 12 can be a case of suicide as both were related to each other.
"It looks like a suicide pact.. Maybe by lover couple," the SP said. The state government has