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Strong forensic and circumstantial evidence nailed Sher Singh Rana in the Phoolan Devi murder case. Rana was on Friday held guilty of the daylight murder of the Samajwadi Party MP by a Delhi court.
The court, however, acquitted the 10 other accused men — including his brother Vijay on the grounds that the prosecution failed to provide enough evidence for a conviction against them.
Rana was convicted on the grounds that his fingerprints were found on the pistol which was used to shoot 37-year-old Phoolan — then a Samajwadi Party MP from Mirzapur constituency in Uttar Pradesh — in front of her Ashoka Road residence in South Delhi on July 25, 2001. It also took into account that the car used in the crime was registered in Rana’s name.
Phoolan was shot dead from close range by three masked gunmen in the heart of the capital’s VIP area as she returned home for lunch after attending the Lok Sabha.
As per the prosecution’s case, Rana, who had dropped Phoolan to Parliament, opened fire on her as soon as she returned to her Ashoka Road residence for lunch. She was hit in the head and the stomach. While fleeing the scene of crime, Rana dropped his country-made pistol. He also fired a shot while escaping in his car, the police alleged.
The police recovered the cars, weapons — including a Webley & Scott revolver — mobile phones, sim cards and the clothes worn by the accused at the time of offence.
Forensic examination of the bullets extricated from the body of the slain MP confirmed that they were fired from the weapons recovered from the accused.
Rana was found guilty of murder, attempt to kill, and common intent. His sentence will be pronounced by the court on August 12.