Kerala police have arrested nine people on charges of kidnapping and murder over the disappearance of a woman in the state capital Coimbatores.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the suspects were found hiding in a house on Friday evening, hours after she was reported missing.
A police team found a body inside the house.
A team of forensic experts also examined the corpse, but the body was later found to be decomposed.
The police have said they will arrest the culprits after a medical examination.
The case has led to widespread anger in Kerala and the neighbouring Andhra Pradesh state, where many residents fear the culprit will escape justice.
Authorities have launched a massive manhunt and the state is on high alert.
Police have seized the accused’s car, mobile phones and computer hard drives.
The state government has said there are plans to build a road network between Coimbetores and Andhra.