Chennai: The Nungambakkam railway station, which has been the epicenter of attention by cops seeking clues and the curious public speaking in hushed tones about the brutal slaying of June 24, appears to be ‘returning to normalcy’ following the nabbing of the alleged killer at his native village in Tirunelveli. The owners of the few stalls on the platform are surely breathing freer now as they may not have to face repeated quizzing by the investigating officers and besides, their customers are sure to return reassured at the absence of the khakhi-clad.
“I used to open my stall at about 5. 45 in the morning and still get good business, but the station is not happening after the murder. As the police were here for questioning us, commuters kept away from the shop”, said a stall owner who now opens after 6.30 a.m. Another stall owner, who claimed that Swathi used to occasionally buy snacks from his shop, was all praise for the cops for catching the killer.
“Commuters were extremely frightened after the incident. I am now convinced that the bad reputation that wrecked on the station will slowly disappear,” he told this correspondent soon after hearing about Ram Kumar’s arrest. The murder continues to the main topic in most conversations on the platform and in the trains. A middle-aged woman was heard chiding two men speaking about the victim. Obviously moved by Swathi’s family’s appeal not to indulge in character assassination, she told the men: “Stop your speculations. Would you do that if she is your daughter?”
Talking to DC, college student C. Varshini said that she was happy with the police solving the case. “The story has come to end, but this gory incident that happened in broad daylight here will continue to haunt us. Women will feel secure only if our public places offer cent percent safety and security”, she said....