5 chilling stories of Indian serial killers, from KD Kempamma to the Butcher of Delhi

Amrutha Pagad
Amrutha PagadAug 11, 2022 | 14:14

5 chilling stories of Indian serial killers, from KD Kempamma to the Butcher of Delhi

Some of India's most vicious serial killers. Representative Photo.

When someone says 'serial killer', most would think of names like Jeffery Dahmer or Ted Bundy. But serial killers are not limited to the US despite their pop culture fame. India is home to some of the most barbaric killers ever found. And just a few days ago, one was caught in the state of Karnataka. 

Here are 5 serial killers from India whose stories will send a chill down your spine: 


1. The serial killer couple out for revenge: In June 2022, Karnataka Police found severed body parts of two women near water canals. The bodies were found 25 km from each other and from the get-go, it was clear that the two women were linked. Only the lower bodies of the women were found, with the upper body missing.

T Siddalingappa.

For a while, the police weren't able to identify the victims or their killers. Then the police visited the family of a missing woman from Chamrajnagar and in some old photos noted the similarities in the skirt of the missing person and of that found at the crime scene. 

After tracing the victim's phone, the police were able to track down the killers. It was found that 35-year-old T Siddalingappa and his girlfriend Chandrakala had invited the victims to their house and had killed them. T Siddalingappa told the police that he killed three women and was planning to kill five more. He said that he killed them to avenge his girlfriend Chandrakala, who claimed that the slain victims had pushed her into prostitution. Reports say the couple also robbed the victims.  


The body of the third victim is yet to be found. 

2. The Butcher of Delhi: Netflix's Indian Predator: The Butcher of Delhi is the latest to capture the interest of true crime lovers. The docuseries tells the story of a migrant worker from Bihar, Chandrakant Jha, who turned into a serial killer between 1998 and 2007. While some reports say he killed around 18 people, he was convicted for only three murders between 2003 and 2007. 

His victims were mostly other migrant workers from neighbouring areas in Delhi who he befriended. He killed most of them over petty disputes like eating meat, lying or theft. Jha is also known for showing off to the police that they couldn't catch him and taunting them by leaving severed bodies of his victims outside Tihar jail. He remains in prison serving a life sentence. 

3. World's youngest serial killer? Amarjeet Sada has become famous globally for reportedly being the world's youngest serial killer. Sada, born in 1998 in Bihar, was arrested by the police in 2007, at around 8-9 years of age for killing three children. He had killed his three victims by the time he was 8 years old in separate incidents between 2006 and 2007.


He took the life of his first victim when he was just 7. And the first two victims of the boy were from his own family. The first was his 6-year-old cousin and the second was his 8-month-old baby sister. 

His crimes came to light when he killed a 6-month-old baby girl of a neighbour. Sada's family had not reported the first two murders calling them a 'family matter'. Reportedly, Sada smiled a lot when interrogated by the police, did not show remorse and freely admitted to the murders. He was diagnosed as a Sadist who sought pleasure from inflicting injuries on others. 

He was released from the children's home where he was detained in 2016 and his whereabouts now are unknown. 

4. Kerala cyanide killer: The story of serial killer Jollyamma Joseph is nothing short of an elaborate movie plot. Jollyamma Joseph, known as Jolly in short, was known as a loving, friendly, chatty, churchgoing, and well-educated woman living in Kerala's Kozhikode. However, in 2019, the 47-year-old woman was arrested for the murder of 6 people including her husband, his parents, and relatives.

The murders took place between 2006 and 2016. Her first victim was her mother-in-law in 2002, who Jolly later said was killed with pesticide-laced food. She used cyanide to kill the rest. Her second victim was her father-in-law, and then her husband Roy Thomas in 2011. At the time of Roy's murder, his uncle Matthew M insisted on a post-mortem over the suspicious deaths and examiners found cyanide in his system but ruled it out as a suicide. Matthew M died of cyanide poisoning soon after in 2014. 

Jolly Joseph then remarried her first husband's cousin Shaju Scaria. And in 2016, she killed Shaju's first wife Sily, and her one-year-old daughter Alphine in the same manner. The police are investigating a few other deaths related to Jolly Joseph. Jolly killed her first husband and his family to inherit their property and money. 

5. India's first convicted serial killer: If you had some kind of a gender bias on who could be a serial killer, think again. For all you know, it could that friendly neighbour aunty or a woman promising to help you outside a temple through puja.

KD Kempamma. Photo: India Today

India's first convicted serial killer, KD Kempamma, is also called 'Cyanide Mallika'. Kempamma killed six women over the span of 8 years between 1999 and 2007. She would often hang around temples in Bengaluru and lure female devotees promising to solve their issues through puja.

Kempamma would ask the women to wear all their expensive jewellery and meet her at an isolated place near a temple. She would then ask them to drink 'holy water' and food laced with cyanide and kill them. She would then steal all their jewellery. She was later sentenced to death, a first in Karnataka. While she was tried for 6 murders, reports say her number of victims runs much more. 

These 5 serial killers are only a few of the modern times among many such tales in India. You must of heard of Cyanide Mohan responsible for killing 20 women, Devendra Sharma an ayurvedic doctor responsible for killing 30-40 drivers in Delhi and surrounding areas, the Nithari killers accused of pedophilia, rape, cannibalism, and more. 

Last updated: August 11, 2022 | 14:31
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