Conviction of six accused of murder of a BJP leader in Trichy by the Madras High Court has been upheld by the Supreme Court. Apex Court Bench comprising of Justices Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Amitava Roy, however acquitted one accused who was convicted by the High court.
Dr. Sridhar (deceased), who was BJP Town Secretary at Trichy, was killed in 1999. According to prosecution, there were a total of 13 accused who hatched conspiracies in two separate groups to kill Dr. Sridhar and curb the growth of BJP in the city.Seven (A1-A7) out of 13 accused charge sheeted were convicted by the Trial court and later the High Court upheld the conviction. A8 to A13 were acquitted. The convicts appealed to Supreme Court.
There were 5 eye witnesses to the incident, including the daughter of the deceased, whose testimony was crucial in convicting the accused. The Apex Court said that statement of the daughter, who witnessed the incident cannot be rejected only on the ground that she is an interested witnessas she has been particularly corroborated by another eye witness’s testimony.
Rejecting the challenge against validity of Test Identification Parade, the Court said there is no invariable rule that two accused persons cannot be made part of the same TIP and such TIP in no manner, affect the validity of the TIP.
Regarding the conviction of A7 for the offences under Section 109 read with Section 302 IPC, it has to be considered that A8 to A13 had been acquitted of this charge and the same reason shall apply for the acquittal of A7 as well, as this charge relates to the second group of which he was allegedly part of.
Read the Judgment here.