In a setback to three convicts in the Bilkis Bano case, the Bombay HC has admitted appeal by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) which seeks death penalty for them.
A division bench of justice NH Patil and justice Mridula Bhatkar admitted the appeal by the CBI, which sought death sentence for the accused — Jaswantbhai Nai, Govindbhai Nai and Radheshyam Shah alias Lala Vakil.
The court observed: “Prima facie we are satisfied that the appeal deserves to be admitted.” The appeal will come up for hearing in due course of time.
The case dates back to post -Godhra riots in Gujarat in 2002.
The special court in Mumbai had tried the case following the transfer by the SC. In 2008, the special court had found 12 accused guilty, 11 of which were sentenced to life imprisonment.
According to the CBI, their crime of multiple murders and rapes was planned and executed which makes the case a rare one. Also, Govind Nai had raped Bilkis in succession, despite her pleas that she may be spared as she was pregnant, CBI said.