The Bombay High Court has upheld the conviction and life sentence awarded to two brothers for murdering their neighbour for allegedly staring at them.
A division bench of acting Chief Justice V K Tahilramani and A S Gadkari dismissed appeals filed by brothers Santosh Rajput (35) and Jitu Rajput (20) challenging a July 2007 sessions court order convicting them and sentencing them to life imprisonment for murdering Mahesh Deshmukh as he used to look at them angrily.
The deceased Mahesh used to reside with his wife Sharmila and children in neighbouring Thane district. The accused were also living in the same building.
It is the prosecution’s case that Jitu told his brother and family that the deceased Mahesh used to always look at him angrily. A fortnight before the incident, Jitu and Santosh’s mother called Sharmila to their apartment and asked her to warn her husband to stop staring at Jitu or else face dire consequences.
Sharmila told the convicts’ family that her husband naturally had such a look on his face and did not mean any harm and requested them to let go of the matter.
On December 13, 2004 Sharmila, her nephew Hemant and two others saw Jitu and Santosh stabbing Mahesh with knives near the building entrance. When Hemant tried to stop them, the duo stabbed him too. While Hemant sustained injuries, Mahesh was declared dead in the hospital.
The high court last month after perusing the facts and evidence of the case was of the opinion that the prosecution has proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused had assaulted Mahesh due to which he died.
“We are of the considered view that the evidence provided by the prosecution is sufficient to sustain the conviction and sentences imposed on the two (Santosh and Jitu),” the court held.