Libertatem Magazine

Calcutta High Court commutes death sentence to 8 murder accused

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Case – The state of West Bengal vs. Sri Shyamal Karmakar and ors


The case of the prosecution, in brief, is that the appellants forcibly took away Sourav Chowdhury in the night of 4th July 2014 and thereafter committed murder of Sourav Chowdhary near Duttapukur railway track. The further case of the prosecution is that after the commission of such murder, the dead body of Sourav Chowdhary was kept on the railway line in order to conceal such offense and to project a police case to the effect that Sourav Chowdhury died of a railway accident. In fact, the dead body of Sourav Chowdhury was separated in various parts since the dead body was cut into pieces by the movement of railways on such railway track. Sandip Chowdhury, the brother of Sourav Chowdhury reported the matter to police in black and white and accordingly Duttapukur police station case no. 528 of 2014 dated 05.07.2014 under Section 364/302/201 of Indian Penal Code and 25/27 of arms act was started and the investigation ultimately culminated in the filing of charge sheet. One liton Talukdar though named in the charge sheet, could not be apprehended and accordingly, the charge sheet was submitted showing him as an absconder. Sandip Chowdhury witness no. 1 Sandip Chowdhury identified the dead body of his brother Sourav Chowdhury lying on the railway track. He had not seen the accused to take away Sourav Chowdhury. He requested his father to inform the police over the phone. He had no direct and personal knowledge about the occurrence.


The bench comprising Justice Nadira Patherya and Justice Debi Prosad Dey upheld the conviction of six persons and sentenced them to rigorous life imprisonment.


The bench, though upheld conviction of all the accused, except two, answered the death reference in negative by observing thus: “On scrutiny of the materials on record we find that the case under reference is simply a case of retaliation and in that view of this case, we are not in a position to accept the case as one of rarest of rare cases. Admittedly, we answer the death reference in negative.”

The high court also held that one of the convicts, Shyamal Karmakar shall not be released from custody till the completion of his 30-year imprisonment towards the sentence of life imprisonment. The said convict had abused the trial court on the date of delivery of judgment saying that court would not do anything to him though he had committed such an offense.

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