The Patna High Court on Wednesday converted into a life term the death sentence awarded to former parliamentarian Anand Mohan and acquitted six others in the case relating to the murder of Gopalganj district magistrate G. Krishnaiya 15 years ago.
The court found Mohan guilty of instigating a furious mob, but did not find the case to be “the rarest of rare cases”.
In an 85-page judgment, a Division Bench observed: “The prosecution failed to establish charges against the six appellants beyond reasonable doubt that they were members of an unlawful assembly.”
The six politicians who were acquitted are former legislators Akhlaq Ahmed, Arun Kumar, Anand Mohan’s wife and former parliamentarian Lovely Anand, sitting JD-U MLA Vijay Kumar Shukla alias Munna Shukla and two other politicians, Shashi Shekhar Thakur and Harendra Kumar.
Earlier, on October 3, 2007, the Sessions Court had awarded the death sentence to Mohan, Ahmed and Arun Kumar for instigating the mob to lynch Krishnaiya. It had also sentenced Mohan’s wife Lovely, Shukla, Thakur and Harendra Kumar to life imprisonment for indirect involvement in the crime.
Krishnaiya, a Bihar cadre, 1985 batch IAS officer hailing from Andhra Pradesh, had been stoned brutally and then shot by a mob near Khabra village on National Highway 28 on December 5, 1994, while he was returning to Gopalganj from Hazipur via Muzaffarpur after attending an official meeting there.