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HindustanTimes Wed,24 Sep 2014

Roorkee-born convicted in Phoolan Devi murder

Tapan Susheel, Hindustan Times  Roorkee, August 08, 2014
First Published: 21:25 IST(8/8/2014) | Last Updated: 21:28 IST(8/8/2014)
City-born Sher Singh Rana, the main accused in the murder of Phoolan Devi was found guilty on Friday, 13 years after the iconic 'bandit queen' was gunned down in broad daylight in Delhi.
 
Rana had gunned down Devi, then a Samajwadi Party MP, outside her Ashoka Road residence in the nation's capital on July 25, 2001.
 
"Except Sher Singh Rana, I am acquitting all the accused," said additional sessions judge Bharat Parashar. The court acquitted ten other co-accused, including Rana's brother Vijay, due to lack of evidence.
 
The quantum of sentence will be pronounced on August 12.
 
Upon hearing the verdict, Rana cried. "When there were others involved, why convict only me?"
 
For Rana, however, the wheel of life has come full circle.
 
Described as an "over-ambitious" youngster by those who know him since his childhood, Rana wanted a large-than-life image for himself, just like the Bollywood films he loved to watch as a youngster.
 
He was the quintessential ambitious youngster who dreamt big. But his dream engulfed him.
 
Born and brought up in a middle class family of Roorkee, Rana always believed in staying in the limelight.
 
Rana did his schooling from Roorkee's St Gabriel Academy.
 
"I remember him as a sportsman, equally good at football and basketball. Also I judged him as a student who was willing to earn fame," revealed Sanjay Rathi, sports teacher at Rana's school. 
 
(With agency inputs)

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