Basant, Sarita get life in jail for Inspector Sucha Singh murder

Basant Kumar at district courts in Sector 43, Chandigarh, on Wednesday

A local court on Wednesday awarded life imprisonment to Basant Kumar, dismissed Chandigarh Police constable, and Sarita for murdering Inspector Sucha Singh.

While awarding the sentence, District and Sessions Judge S K Aggarwal ruled, "Basant, once a part of a disciplined force, has spoiled his own life by spoiling the life of a senior police officer who was also part of the same force. Basant while joining the duty must have thought to serve the people by protecting their lives, liberty and property and nobody must have known at that time that one day the same fellow will take law in his own hands and will not hesitate to kill even an innocent senior police officer without any rhyme or reason."

Arguing on the quantum of sentence, the public prosecutor for Chandigarh Police had submitted that "the life of the innocent police inspector was brought to an end by both the accused by their devilish design in a ghastly manner and that they are habitual offender and have a criminal record and, therefore, do not deserve leniency". He had contended that "such a scene of occurrence when visualised even for a moment gives a jerk to the judicial conscience and in turn the convicts also deserve a jerk of the Hang Man's rope to have the taste of death, this being the grave of gravest and rare of rarest case. Hence the capital punishment should be awarded to them".

However, the defence counsel for the convicts opposed the prosecution's version and the assertion put forth by the public prosecutor, and contended that previous conduct of the accused had not been established so far and they were just facing trial but had not been convicted in the earlier case.

After listening to the arguments put forward by both defence counsel and prosecution, the court held, "Though the convicts have taken the life of a sober and meritorious police officer, keeping in view the entire facts, circumstances, age and antecedents of the accused, this court does not feel that this case falls under the grave of gravest or rare of the rarest case and therefore both the accused are sentenced to life imprisonment."

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