The Thiruvananthapuram additional sessions court on Monday awarded double life sentences to 11 Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh members in connection with the Vishnu murder case. Vishnu, a Communist Party of India-Marxist activist, was murdered on 1 April 2008. The court also sentenced one person to 3 years imprisonment for helping the accused hide. The court imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 and life imprisonment for accused number 13. In all 13 members of the RSS were convicted for the murder of a CPI-M activist.
The court on Friday had found all 13 accused guilty and announced the quantum of punishment on Monday. The court had acquitted one accused. While one accused, Renjith, died during trial another, Azam Ani, a Bharatiya Janata Party leader remains absconding. RSS activists Santosh, Manoj, Biju Kumar, Harilal, Renjith Kumar, Bibin, Satheesh, Bose, Vinod Kumar, Subhash, Satish and Sivalal have been convicted.
CPI-M activist Vishnu was hacked to death in broad daylight in April 2008 outside the passport office in Kaithamukku. 16 members of the BJP were initially named as accused in the murder. Vishnu was accused in three cases of attacks against RSS members in 2001. Investigating officials claimed that Vishnu was hacked as revenge crime after an attempt on RSS member Tirumala Hari's life.