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Nido Taniam case: Has CBI diluted charges?

india Updated: May 04, 2014 01:08 IST
Avantika Mehta

Nido Taniam, the student from Arunachal Pradesh who died of injuries sustained during a brutal racist attack, was not beaten up by the accused once, but thrice over the course of an hour, says the chargesheet filed by the CBI on Friday.

The CBI claimed that Taniam was tracked by the main accused and beaten up second and third time even after he had already settled the altercation by paying the accused Rs 7,000 for the damage he had done to a broken glass counter.

The agency had filed its chargesheet before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pritam Singh. The charge sheet names four men Farman, Sunder Singh, Pawan and Sunny Uppal and three juveniles as the accused. They have been charged under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Atrocities against Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribes Act.

Read: CBI drops murder charges in Nido Taniam's death

The court took cognisance of the charge sheet the next day and fixed the matter for May 7 for further hearing.

Despite the fact that its chargesheet mentions that the men had beaten up Taniam at least thrice, the agency dropped the murder charges which the Delhi Police had levied on the four accused earlier. An accused is charged with culpable homicide not amounting to murder when there is no proof that he had a pre-meditated intention of killing the victim.

However, the agency’s own timeline tells a different story.

Taniam and his friends had gone to Lajpat Nagar to visit a sick friend, but did not know the exact location of his house due to which they had stopped at Farman’s shop for directions. Rather than help them, he and the three juveniles, who too have been charged by the CBI, made fun of Taniam’s bleached hair. Frustrated, Taniam broke the glass counter due to which the four beat him up outside the shop. Farman even used a stick to beat up Taniam on his head.

Farman later tracked Taniam around Lajpat Nagar in the hour that followed the first beating and landed blows at him on the next two occasions.

“The accused may be able to claim that the first beating took place in the heat of the moment. But the second and third times were premeditated acts, done well after the altercation of the broken glass was settled,” said criminal lawyer MS Khan.

The chargesheet also states that Taniam and Farman were made to sign a compromise letter by a policeman of the area.