INDIA: ASSAM DEATH PENALTY FOR LYNCHING DOCTOR
October 21, 2020:
A Jorhat court on 21 October 2020 handed death penalty to an accused and life terms to 24 others convicted in the Dr Deben Dutta lynching case of 2019. (Sources: The Telegraph, 21/10/2020)
Delivering his verdict in the “brutal and barbaric” act in a packed court room around 2pm, Jorhat district and sessions judge Robin Phukan handed the death penalty to Sanjay Rajowar, 21.
On 12 October, the district and sessions court had convicted 25 of the 36 accused in the case. There were a total of 60 witnesses but only 56 were examined during the trial. An accused died during the trial.
Dutta, 73, senior medical officer of Teok Tea Estate dispensary in Jorhat district was lynched by a mob on 31 August 2019, for allegedly delaying the treatment of worker Somra Majhi. Dutta died while being rushed by police personnel to Jorhat Medical College and Hospital. The mob had allegedly attacked him with sharp weapons during the assault.
Special public prosecutor Durga Prasad Jaiswal said he was satisfied with the ruling because it was rare to secure conviction in a lynching case.
The lynching sparked off a series of street protests and the Indian Medical Association threatening to withdraw doctors from garden hospitals if prompt action was not taken to punish the guilty.