Hours before the threats to her life finally culminated in what she had feared the most, a desperate Kavitha Nerputh went to police to ask for protection.
It is understood that Nerputh, who appeared “uneasy”, was seen at the Mountain Rise police station where she is alleged to have attempted to file for a restraining order.
Not 24 hours later, Nerputh was strangled with a cellphone charger cable. Her body was found in her car, which was parked in Alexandra Park, on Monday night.
And while the single mother of three was laid to rest yesterday, it is not clear whether or not SAPS offered her the protection she so desperately needed.
Yesterday, hundreds of mourners gathered at the Aryan Hall to bid her farewell. The family requested privacy and asked media not to be part of the funeral proceedings.
According to a resident, who asked to remain unnamed, he had spotted Nerputh at the police station at about 7.30 pm on Sunday.
The man said although he did not know the full story, from what he could pick up, Nerputh was urging police to help her apply for a protection order.
“She was sitting on the other side of the police station talking to the cops. From the bits I picked up, she was trying to file a restraining order.
“She was insistent on speaking to a female in the department as she wanted to show her something,” the resident said.
The man said Nerputh “seemed like something was worrying her”.
“She had a lot of papers and she was just going on about the same restraining order and that she needed help.”
Following their short encounter, the man said he was shocked to learn in the newspapers that Nerputh had been murdered on Monday.
“I saw the desperation on her face and it’s upsetting that our cops couldn’t help her. It’s sad that you’re here today and next thing you’re gone,” the man said.
Mountain Rise police station did not respond to a media query sent by The Witness yesterday.
Sinikiwe Biyela of Lifeline Pietermaritzburg said it was concerning that even protection orders did not protect women.
“It scares people who still respect the law and who have a conscience. Unfortunately, it does not protect women from perpetrators who are extremely violent, not scared of the law and have no conscience,” she said.
Biyela said the reality was that many women die with copies of protection orders in their bags.
“It is highly frustrating that most perpetrators get away with murder, and they perpetrate again.
“It is for this reason the Department of Justice should show through its actions that they do not condone such criminal acts and protecting women is one of their priorities.
“Women also need to be educated that protection orders alone will not provide the maximum protection that they need. It is advisable to also lay a charge so that the perpetrator can be arrested,” she said.
Meanwhile, a Facebook page — Justice for Kavitha Nerputh — is backing a demand for her killer/s to be brought to book.
The introduction on the page reads: “As this beautiful soul is laid to rest, let us reflect on what she stood for … Justice, Respect, A genuine love for humanity (known and unknown), and her powerful fight against harassment.
“Regardless of who the public thought she was, she was a kindhearted, loving, generous human being that touched the hearts of thousands through her business or just her daily interaction.
“Let us keep her family and loved ones in our prayers. They are beyond broken. Let us respect their privacy as well as their feelings by NOT posting negative comments. News24