The Bombay high court (HC) last week set free a Nasik resident, sentenced to life imprisonment for killing his mother, uncle and sister-in-law, on the grounds of insanity.
The division bench of justice VK Tahilramani and justice BP Colabawalla granted exemption to Tulshiram Pardhi, who has spent more than five years in prison, ruling he was suffering from psychotic disorder at the time of the murders.
The incident took place on January 28, 2009, at Galoshi village, when Pardhi suddenly assaulted and killed his sister-in-law. His mother witnessed the attack and called his uncle to help. Pardhi killed them both with a pickaxe. He also assaulted a local who was his uncle.
Pardhi was arrested and prosecuted for killing the trio. His defence raised the plea of insanity, but the sessions court convicted him and sentenced him to life. The case was then taken to the HC.
“An inference can certainly be drawn that the appellant was under an attack of mental illness at the time of the incident,” the court concluded after perusing his medical reports, especially the one given by a doctor who examined him after the incident.
“It appears that at the time of the crime, the appellant was suffering from a bout of mental insanity and was incapable of knowing the nature and consequences of his act, or that it was contrary to the law,” the judges said.
The court also took into consideration that no motive for the crime was established, and that Pardhi had not tried to flee after killing three members of his family.