The much awaited verdict on the 2006 Khairlanji Dalit massacre case was today deferred by a month by the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court as one of Judges was pre-occupied with an assignment.
Justice A P Lavande told lawyers in his chamber that the judgement would be pronounced on July 14 as Justice R C Chavan who also heard the matter was on assignment at Mumbai bench.
Justices Lavande and Chavan had heard the matter on a day-to-day basis from March 29 and reserved for judgement before summer vacation.
The accused were not produced in the High Court today. Strict vigil was maintained by police around the court premises as the matter is sensitive.
Four members of a Dalit family - Surekha Bhaiyalal Bhotmange, her daughter Priyanka and sons Sudhir and Roshan - were killed on September 29, 2006 over a land dispute in Khairlanji village of Bhandara district in Maharashtra.
Six persons were sentenced to death and two awarded life imprisonment by a Bhandara court on September 24, 2008.
In March-April this year, the High Court bench had heard arguments on the confirmation of sentences. The bench had also heard appeals of CBI, the prosecuting agency, and defence lawyers.
The CBI had appealed against the lower court's order dropping charges under Atrocities Act for lack of evidence and for enhancement of sentence of two life convicts to death.
The defence lawyers had appealed against the trial court's verdict sentencing six accused to death and two to life imprisonment.