Adakka Raju, the ex-thief turned key witness in the Sr Abhaya murder case, is being rewarded handsomely for his courage. Raju has received nearly Rs 15 lakh as donations from people across Kerala.
Raju had no clue that he had received so much money until he decided to withdraw money from his account for Christmas celebrations. While withdrawing money, Raju was astonished to find lakhs of Rupees deposited in his bank account. According to reports, soon after the verdict of the Sr Abhaya murder case was announced, several media houses shared details of Raju’s financial difficulties. The media houses also provided Raju’s bank account details along with their reports. Generous donors across Kerala have donated money into Raju's account.
On receiving money, Raju made it clear that he doesn’t want it. “I do not want the money. I am glad that the child (Sr Abhaya) got justice and those responsible have been punished,” Raju told a media house.
For 28 years, Raju stuck to his statements in the murder case. Despite being offered crores of money to change his statements, he did not cave in to the temptation. Even when investigating officers tortured and beat him to retract his statements, he did not succumb to their demands. Despite being an ex-thief, Raju showed courage and stood for what was right.
On March 27 1992, Raju decided to steal copper components of a lightning conductor installed atop Pius X Convent’s building. It was on that night that Sr Abhaya was murdered.
“I was on the terrace, stealing copper components of a lightning conductor installed atop the building. It was my third visit as I had come there twice before for stealing components. I saw two men walking up the stairs with a torch and they were surveying the surroundings. One of them was a tall man and the other one is Father Joseph Kottoor. As they were there, I abandoned my plan and left the place,” Raju told the CBI Court. This statement sealed the fate of the accused, Fr Kottoor and Sr Sephy in the case. A special CBI court sentenced the duo to life imprisonment.