The Supreme Court has reversed the acquittal of six persons convicted by a trial court in Uttar Pradesh for a triple murder that occurred 30 years ago.
A bench of Justices RV Raveendran and P Sathasivam, however, reduced the life imprisonment imposed by the trial court to 10 years RI on the ground that the offence fell under Section 304 Part II (culpable homicide not amounting to murder).
The convicts Kishanpal Singh, Suresh Singh, Mahendra Singh, Neksey Singh, Jaivir Singh, Sheodan Singh and Bahar Singh have been asked to surrender and serve their remaining part of the sentence.
The case of the prosecution was that the accused along with 10 others armed with firearms killed Kaptan Singh, Raj Mahesh and Maya Devi on June 21, 1978 owing to previous enmity.
On the basis of various eyewitnesses who happened to be relatives of the deceased the trial court in 1980 convicted the six accused along with main accused Onkar Singh.
But on an appeal by the accused, the Allahabad High Court while upholding the conviction of Onkar Singh acquitted the remaining accused on the ground that the eyewitnesses were all "interested" witnesses, following which the UP government, appealed in the apex court.