Imposing imprisonment until the death of a rickshaw driver and his accomplice in connection with the murder of a Dhanbad court judge last year, a special CBI tribunal said in its order : “this culprit must be kept behind bars until the end of his life”. On July 28, CBI Tribunal Judge Rajni Kant Pathak found rickshaw driver Lakhan Verma and his associate Rahul Verma guilty of the murder of 49-year-old Judge Uttam Anand, observing that “no one can to think that a judge in the judicial system of Jharkhand would be murdered in such a situation”. way. This incident has shaken not only the entire judicial fraternity of the country, but also the citizen at the mass level,” said CBI Special Court Judge Rajni Kant Pathak, who ruled out a “lenient view” of the affair.
Extra Sessions Judge Dhanbad, Anand was hit by a heavy autorickshaw on July 28 last year at Randhir Verma Chowk near the District Court while taking an early morning jog around 5am. He died the same day. The CBI Special Tribunal, in its order, observed that after such an incident, there was an atmosphere of fear among the family members of the court officers and people who were compelled to think whether this could happen to a judge of how safe ordinary citizens were.
There are only two sentences for murder, one for life and the other for hanging (capital punishment), observed the judge. However, he pointed out, according to the decisions of the Supreme Court, the case does not fall within the jurisdiction of the rarest of the few, and in his order stated “in my opinion, if the convicts are sentenced to the life imprisonment, he can be released from custody after about 14 years, according to (at) the Prison Handbook.”
The order therefore read: “But in the spirit of this court, such a culprit must be kept behind bars until the end of his life. If he were released, it would send a bad message to society, in especially to those who have witnessed this type of incident.. Furthermore, they may commit the same offense again without respect or consideration for human life and the law of the land.”
“As observed by the Honorable Supreme Court, life imprisonment without any remission until the last breath may be imposed in lieu of the death penalty. Accordingly, convicts Lakhan Kumar Verma and Rahul Kumar Verma are by hereby sentenced to life imprisonment without any remission and commutation until the last breath together with a fine of Rs 20,000 for each convicted for the punishable offense IPC u/s 302/34 and to Failing a fine, the above-mentioned convicts shall face a simple term of imprisonment of one year,” the order stated.
The convicts were further sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for seven years and a fine of 10,000 rupees each for the violation of Sections 201/34 of the ICC and in default of the fine to simple imprisonment. six months. Both sentences will be served concurrently, but fines will be collected separately, the order added that half of the amount of fines collected will be paid to family members of the deceased u/s 357(1)(b) CrPC as compensation.
He said that the compensation of the amount of the fine does not seem adequate, especially when the victims are the widow, wife and minor children of the late judge Uttam Anand and added that the victim “Kritee Sinha (informant ) and child victims of the deceased should be adequately compensated u/s 357A CrPC and under the victim compensation scheme of the Government of Jharkhand, as the deceased was a sitting judge working under the Government of Jharkhand.
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