Reported by Malay Ray
Sundargarh, Sep 26:
As many as 17 persons, all of them residents of Dudukabahal village in Odisha’s Sundargarh district, have been sentenced to life imprisonment by Additional District Judge (ADJ), Sundargarh, on Saturday afternoon in the much publicized mob attack on a police team killing an Assistant Sub inspector (ASI) of police in August 2012.
The court also ordered all the 17 convicts in the case to pay a penalty of Rs. 10,000/ each and undergo another two years of imprisonment if they fail to pay up.
According to the sequence of events presented by the prosecution in the court, a team of five policemen from Lanjiberna outpost under Rajgangpur police station of Sundargarh district had gone to Dudukubahal village to arrest a criminal identified as Baldeb Majhi in the evening on August 11, 2012. The police team included ASI Nabin Patel, Officer Incharge of Lanjiberna police outpost, Bhimsen Topno, Constable Surendra Nag, Home guard Birendra Sahoo and Gram Rakshi Siril Diyali.
As the police team was walking to the jeep parked at the entrance of the village after arresting Majhi, the latter screamed for help while crossing the village club house. In no time, a mob gathered at the place and attacked the policemen.
Sources said three policemen, identified as Bhimsen Tappo, Surendra Nag and Siril Diyali managed to escape from the mob attack whereas OIC Nabin Patel and home guard Birendra Sahoo couldn’t. The mob mercilessly attacked these two police officials leaving both of them critically injured. Nabin Patel died on the spot whereas Birendra Sahoo lost his sense. Taking both of them for dead, the villagers put both the bodies on the police jeep and pushed it into Nakati nala, where the water level was above seven feet.
Birendra, however, recovered his senses in the water and managed to come out of water and reached Rajgangpur police station at about 9 pm and informed about the incident. Nabin Patel’s body was recovered from the Nakati Nala the next day.
One the basis of FIR filed by Birendra Sahoo, Rajgangpur police had lodged a case under section 302, 147,148, 345, 307, 294, 332, 337, 224, 201 and 149 of IPC and arrested as many as 18 persons in this case, including Tulsa Majhi, wife of prime accused Baldeb Majhi. Tulsa, however, had got bail from Odisha High Court whereas the rest 17 have been in Sundargarh jail as their trial was going on in Additional District Judge Court, Sundargarh.
After examining as many as 15 witnesses, ADJ, Sundargarh Dilip Kumar Mishra on Saturday afternoon held all seventeen accused guilty and sentenced them to life imprisonment. Accused Tulsa Majhi, wife of Baldeb Majhi was acquitted in this case due to lack of evidence.
The accused who got LI in this case have been identified as Baldeb Majhi (28), Siba Nayak (45), Gajadhar Naik (34), Kishor Majhi (25), Raiman Majhi (30), Sunil Minz (20), Kuswa Lakra (21), Bhutulu Lakra (22), Rathi Minz (36), Jogia Minz (36), Kirungu Minz (32), Nayak Minz (32), Laxman Minz (25), Jambua Majhi (38), Upendra Lakra (25), Sulindar Lakra (26) and Sanjay Lakra (20).