INDIA: ORISSA HC COMMUTES DEATH PENALTY TO 35 YEARS OF IMPRISONMENT
June 23, 2017:
Orissa high court provided relief to five persons, who were convicted in rape and murder of a minor girl in Keonjhar, by commuting death penalty of two of the convicts to 35 years of imprisonment and acquitting the remaining three. (Sources: TNN, 23/06/2017)
As per the case details, a minor girl in Beklundi village in Keonjhar district was allegedly raped and murdered in 2012. The deceased, a class VIII student, had gone for her tuitions and did not return home following which her family members launched a frantic search and found her body with injury marks about one kilometre from the village.
A case was registered against Mata Munda, Jiten Munda, Biswanath Gope, Mangul Purti and Harjit Singh and investigation was made. Subsequently, the trial court additional district and sessions court at Champua had awarded death sentence to the five accused in 2015.
As all the five accused were poor they had filed criminal appeal against the death sentence from jail and accordingly high court had engaged two lawyers to deal their cases.
While Mata and Jiten have been awarded 35 years of rigorous imprisonment in jail for the crime, the remaining three Biswanath, Mangul and Harjit have been acquitted on ground that there was no concrete evidence against them.