A special CBI court on Monday convicted Surinder Koli — servant of Moninder Singh Pandher — for the murder and rape of Rachna in the Nithari killings case.
“The court today (Monday) convicted Surinder Koli for the rape and murder of Rachna at Nithari in 2006. The quantum of sentence will be pronounced tomorrow (Tuesday),” CBI lawyer J.P. Sharma said.
The court of special CBI Judge A.K. Singh found Koli guilty under sections 302 (punishment for murder), 364 (kidnapping for murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence), 511 (punishment for life imprisonment) and 376 (punishment for rape) of the Indian Penal Code.
During the 122 days of trial, the court examined 46 witnesses before giving the verdict on Monday, Sharma said.
Nine-year-old Rachna Lal was found missing in April 2006 after she left her home saying she was going to meet her grandparents.
After Rachna went untraceable, her parents lodged a police complaint. Her parents later identified Rachna’s clothes and other belongings from the D-5 residence of Pandher when a search was carried out.
Pandher was not an accused in this case as the investigating agency had not found any evidence against him.
With the decision in this case of Nithari killings, 13 others remain to be decided.
Both Pandher and his domestic aide Surinder Koli have been accused of killing young children and women and a total of 19 cases have been lodged against them.
On February 13, 2009, the duo were sentenced to death in the Rimpa Haldar case in the first verdict in the Nithari killings. However, Pandher was acquitted by the Allahabad High Court on September 11, last year.
Of the 19 cases of abduction, rape and murder of four women and 15 children, mostly girls, the CBI has filed charge sheets in 16 cases. All the cases are being heard separately.
While Koli has been charged with rape, abduction and murder in all the cases, Pandher is co-accused in six cases.