The victim’s father and wife told media that they had approached police soon after he was kidnapped but officers refused to entertain them, saying they were busy arranging security for a visit by Pinaryi Vijayan, the state’s chief minister.
Neenu named her brother Shanu Chacko and 11 people as responsible for the crime. Most gang members belong to the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), a youth wing associated with Kerala’s ruling communist alliance.
The crime comes amid allegations that Communist Party of India leaders use police to meet their ends.
However, police have arrested some DYFI members in connection with the murder.
The government is to suspend local police officers including Kottayam district police chief V.M. Mohammad Rafik.
Widespread protests have been held by Dalit Christian groups in the state recently against the discrimination they face from upper-caste Christians, commonly known as Syrian Christians because of their ancient link with the Syrian Church and its liturgy.
A Syrian Christian bishop recently rattled the community by saying that discrimination against Dalit Christians was due to the “myth” that their forefathers were upper-caste Brahmins.