The Bombay High Court has granted bail to three Hindu Rashtra Sena members, accused of killing a youth in 2014, observing they were provoked and instigated in the name of religion.
Justice Mridula Bhatkar on January 12 granted bail to Vijay Gambhire, Ganesh Yadav and Ajay Lalge, accused of murdering 28-year-old Mohsin Shaikh on June 2, 2014 in Pune.
Before the incident, the trio had attended a meeting of Hindu Rashtra Sena to protest against defiling of a statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
According to prosecution, the three accused armed with hockey sticks and bats roamed the streets on the night of June 2 when they came across Shaikh. The trio then attacked him.
“The meeting was held prior to the incident of assault. The accused otherwise had no other motive such as personal enmity against the victim. The only fault of the deceased was that he belonged to the other religion,” the court said.
“I consider this factor in favour of the accused. Moreover the accused do not have any criminal record and it appears that they were provoked in the name of religion,” Justice Bhatkar said.
The court, while granting the accused bail on a surety of Rs 40,000 each, said the accused in future should stay clear and not associate themselves with such groups like Hindu Rashtra Sena.