Supreme court- file photo
Supreme court- file photo

SC commutes death to life imprisonment to rape, murder case convict

ANI | Updated: Nov 28, 2018 15:47 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov 28 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Wednesday commuted death sentence to life imprisonment to a man who was convicted in a rape and triple murder case, after noting that death penalty is awarded only in those cases where there is no chance of a convict's reform.
A three-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Kurian Joseph, and comprising Justices Hemant Gupta and Deepak Gupta, commuted the death sentence of Chhannu Lal Verma to life imprisonment.
The court did not agree with the submissions made by Atul Jha, standing counsel of Chhattisgarh, stating that there was no evidence to show that he (Verma) was beyond reform, adding that life term will prove to be an inadequate punishment for his crime.
Verma was convicted by a Sessions Court and then by the Chhattisgarh High Court for killing Anand Ram Sahu, his wife Firanteen Bai and raping and murdering their daughter-in-law Ratna Sahu in 2011, and was subsequently awarded a death penalty.
Jha had submitted to the apex court that Verma, with premeditation and planning, committed house trespass and assaulted Anand Ram, Firanteen and Ratna Sahu. He had submitted to the apex court that the evidence on record and testimonies of different witnesses clearly establish that there was precision and all the targets were well planned by Verma.
He further submitted that the accused crossed all limits of brutality and was in such mental state where he was not thinking of any other situation but to kill the persons belonging to the family of Ratna Bai.
Jha had submitted that the appellant (Verma) had previous criminal antecedents involving the same family. Therefore, it is a case where he failed to reform himself on more than one occasion, he noted.
Verma, in his defence, submitted that the conviction was based on the testimony of a child eyewitness, and thereby, should not be relied upon. (ANI)