Uttarakhand court convicts 4 men for killing Delhi couple, sentence tomorrow
The additional sessions court of Vikasnagar, 40km from Dehradun, pronounced the judgment on Tuesday and the quantum of punishment will be announced this Fridayindia Updated: Mar 28, 2018 23:31 IST
An Uttarakhand court has convicted four people of murdering a Delhi couple in 2014, but they were acquitted of rape charges in the absence of evidence, government counsel Guruprasad Raturi said on Wednesday.
The additional sessions court of Vikasnagar, 40km from Dehradun, pronounced the judgment on Tuesday and the quantum of punishment will be announced this Friday.
Besides murder, the court held the four men guilty of hiding evidence and looting the couple — painter Abhijit Paul and his friend Momita Das, who were from Lado Sarai in New Delhi. They were murdered during a holiday in Dehradun district’s Chakrata in October 2014.
According to the investigation, Abhijit and Momita, a fine arts teacher, rented a jeep on October 23 to travel to the scenic Tiger waterfall in the area. The driver, Raju Das, reportedly told the couple that three more passengers — identified as Kundan Das, Bablu Das and Guddu Das — would be travelling with them to a village near the spot.
On the way back from the waterfall, it was alleged that the four men overpowered Abhijit, tied him with a rope and raped Momita before murdering the couple and dumping bodies in the Yamuna, the police charge sheet says.
Momita’s father lodged a complaint with Delhi police six days later and investigators traced her mobile phone’s location in Chakrata. A day later, Abhijit’s body was spotted on banks of the river.
A joint team of Delhi and Dehradun police arrested Raju on November 10, and he confessed to the crime, the charge sheet says. The other three were caught a day after. Three days later, Momita’s decomposed body was found.
The crime sent shockwaves in the region and affected tourism, the people’s economic mainstay.
Government counsel Raturi said 43 people were made witness in the case initially and 20 of them recorded their statements.