Observing that the prosecution had failed to prove their point beyond reasonable doubt, a district court here on Thursday acquitted Gulam Abas of Malerkotla of the charges of killing his 22-year-old wife by setting her ablaze.
Following the judgment announced by additional sessions judge Varinder Aggarwal, Gulam will now be released from the jail more than six months after he was arrested on October 24 last year on the charges of murder.
The prosecution has failed to prove the offence against Gulam beyond reasonable doubt and there was the possibility that the deceased, Sashan, might have committed suicide as she had stated in her first statement to the Malerkotla police.
Talking to the Hindustan Times, Gulam's counsel Gurtej Singh Grewal said the case was registered in Malerkotla (City 2) police station on October 5, 2013. Soon after the incident, Sashan was rushed to the civil hospital in Malerkotla, where she told the police that she had set herself ablaze to commit suicide. But, in her dying declaration in Chandigarh, that was recorded by chief judicial magistrate, Chandigarh, Jashwinder Singh, Sashan said that she was upset over the extramarital affairs of her husband and when she objected about them to her husband, he set her ablaze after pouring kerosene one her.
In the court, Gulam's counsel proved that Sashan had committed suicide and Gulam not only tried to save her life but also rushed her to the nearby hospital in Malertkotla and then to Rajindra hospital, Patiala.
During the attempt to save his wife's life, Gulam also received burns on his hands. On the statement of Sashan, the Malerkotla police had first booked Gulam under Section 307 of the IPC, then after her death, Gulam was booked on the charges of murder under Section 302 of the IPC.
In her first statement to the police, Sashan had allegedly told the truth but she changed her statement under pressure from her brothers.
Five years before her death (in 2008),17-year-old Sashan was married to Gulam, who was living in a rented house in Kateek market, Malerkotla. Sashan haf also left behind her two daughters, who now live with their grandmother.