Three days after Kannada actor Maria Susairaj, convicted in the Neeraj Grover murder case, walked out of Byculla jail having already served her three-year sentence as an undertrial, the state home department indicated they would challenge the verdict in the high court.
“We haven’t got the order as yet, but we will surely challenge the verdict in the high court,” a senior home department official said on Monday.
The Mumbai sessions court, on Friday, had convicted Susairaj and her fiancé Emile Jerome Mathew, a former navy officer, for their involvement in the murder of Grover, a TV executive. While Susairaj was convicted for destroying evidence, Jerome was sentenced to 10 years’ rigorous imprisonment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
Jerome had allegedly killed Grover after he found him with Maria at her Malad residence on May 7, 2008. Susairaj and Jerome allegedly hacked Grover’s body into pieces, stuffed them into two bags and drove to Manor in Thane district, where they burnt the body parts.
Susairaj’s release has attracted criticism from various quarters and has pressured the state to appeal against the verdict. Political parties including the Shiv Sena and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena have also protested against the actor.