Sanap was arrested from Nashik on March 3 and charged with raping and murdering Esther.

Chandrabhan Sanap
Salman Ansari
39-year-old Chandrabhan Sanap, who was convicted on Tuesday of raping and killing 23-year old software engineer Esther Anuhya in January 2014, has been awarded the death penalty by a Sessions Court in Mumbai on Friday. Special judge Vrushali Joshi who gave the verdict categorised it as a rarest of rare case.Esther Anuhya, who hailed from Vijayawada, had arrived at Lokmanya Tilak Terminus in Kurla on January 5, 2014, post her Christmas leave to resume work at Tata Consultancy Services (TCS). She was then reported missing. Her decomposed body was found dumped in the mangroves near the Eastern Express Highway in Kanjurmarg on January 16, 2014.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>CCTV clips recorded at Kurla terminus from January 5 showed Esther leaving with an unknown man. “The efforts of a special team led us to the accused Sanap, a Kanjurmarg resident, who has a criminal record,” said a police officer.Sanap has around eight cases of bag-lifting and stealing registered at Gamdevi, Nashik, Manmad and Itarsi. The police zeroed in on Sanap after comparing his photos from police records with the face on CCTV. Sanap was arrested from Nashik on March 3 and charged with raping and murdering Esther.Dots were later connected that Sanap, pretending to be a taxi driver, had offered to drive Esther to her hostel in south Mumbai on his motorcycle. He allegedly stopped the bike on a service road on the Eastern Express Highway near Kanjurmarg and dragged Esther into bushes nearby to rape her. When she resisted, he hit her head on a stone and strangled her to death.While the Sessions Court gave its verdict on arguments made by special public prosecutor Raja Thakare, the defence advocate Prakash Salsingekar who had pleaded for life imprisonment has reportedly said that the case will be taken to the High Court as the evidence presented were weak.

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Death sentence for Chandrabhan Sanap for rape, murder of TCS engineer Esther Anuhya