To Tamil Nadu he is well known to be Auto Shankar.
Gowri Shankar, well-known as Auto Shankar was a notorious criminal from Tamil Nadu who committed multiple murders counting to 6. Gowri Shankar was born on January 21, 1954, in Kangeyanallur, a village close to Vellore. After leaving his adolescent years, the former painter first made a living by peddling cycle rickshaws before slowly transitioning to driving an auto rickshaw. Later on, he began smuggling alcohol in his rikshaw. He gradually began trading in sex labour after everything began to go his way. After he understood the complexities of the trade, he started his own firm. He operated brothels in his community and expanded greatly. Through his trade activity, he made relationships with law enforcement and other officials.
He found satisfaction in his work running the brothels and in his profession and found pleasure in it. He meets Lalitha, a female performer in a bar-like setting and develops feelings for her. Sadly, she runs off with his friend Sudalaimuthu. Due to this, Shankar became agitated and killed them by taking them to a private place. After then, Lalitha’s body was buried in a plot, where it was later discovered by police. While Sudalaimuthu, his friend, was burned and his ashes were thrown into the Bay of Bengal. He and his crew were involved in the brutal killing of three people who got in conflict with them over a brothel girl. These three bodies were found to be covered by walls after burring in the earth.
The State was in a political crisis following the death of former Chief Minister M.G. Ramachandran in December 1987 until Governor’s Rule was installed between January 1988 and 1989. In response to the Tiruvanmiyur police’s failure to respond to their earlier complaint, the parents of several of the missing men eventually went to Governor P.C. Alexander. A fresh team of cops was organised in response to the governor’s instructions to Jaffer Ali, the deputy inspector general of police for the Chengai range. The Pallavaram Circle inspectors Thangamani and Ranganathan, the sub-inspectors Subramanian and Sengeni, and the constables Rajan Babu, Natarajan, Devadas, and Perumal were all a part of it. Aari, a police officer from the nearby Tiruvannamalai district who was well-known to Shankar, was also recruited by the gang.
Aari’s inputs about Shankar and gang were extremely helpful, and after Shankar’s cronies were apprehended and questioned, they opened up about each murder and how they had disposed of the remains. The 1988 discovery of Lalitha and the three men’s bodies caused a storm among the locals. Following Shankar’s arrest, the police thoroughly retrieved his belongings and discovered his diary, which contained pictures of officers of all ranks posing with him.
Before being moved to Chennai Central prison, where Shankar executed a daring escape with the aid of a lady, Shankar and his men were investigated at Pallavaram police station. He was eventually located in Rourkela Steel City, Odisha after they escaped and was brought back. He was hung with Eldin and Shivaji, members of his gang at Salem Prison. Three of the jail wardens were also punished for helping Shankar escape.
Everyone would agree that this is unique among the horrific murder cases that Chennai has seen because of the method the victim was slain and the victim’s level of authority. None of the other cases would come closer to this story of one of the most dangerous serial killers.