HC acquits Mahanand of his first conviction

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 02 July 2013 14:30 IST

Serial Dupatta killer Mahanand Naik has been acquitted by the high court, in the first case he was convicted by the district and sessions court earlier, after he was acquitted in seven murder cases earlier.

Mahanand has two more conviction appeals pending before the high court while five more murder cases are pending in the district and sessions courts.

In this particular case, Mahanand was convicted on 30 May 2011 by then Panaji principal district and sessions judge Nutan Sardesai in a case of alleged murder of Sushila Fatarpekar of Curca-Bambolim in 2007.

A division bench consisting of Justice A P Lawande and Justice U V Bakre of Bombay high court at Panaji has set aside the conviction and life imprisonment of Mahanand, on the grounds of the failure of the police in gathering enough evidence.

The high court judgement stated:

“Taking overall view of the prosecution evidence, we are of the opinion that some of the main circumstances alleged by the prosecution have not been proved beyond reasonable doubt and even otherwise the cumulative effect of all the said circumstances proved by the prosecution may at the most create grave suspicion about the accused but the same does not lead to the conclusion of guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt, for any of the offences for which he has been convicted and sentenced. The points for determination, therefore, get answered in the negative.”

The high court has also directed the district and sessions courts to issue notices and hold adequate inquiry for disposal of the melted gold, as the police have failed to establish that it belonged to Sushila.

The court also observed that even the jeweller, from whom the gold was confiscated, was not interrogated.

Mahanand was first arrested by Ponda police on 21 April 2009, after a woman complained against him of rape.

His spate of crimes unfolded as he confessed during custodial interrogation of 16 murders beginning from 1994.

The victim’s sister had filed a complaint against Mahanand at the Agacaim police station on 19 May  two years ago about Sushila’s abduction on 12 October in 2007, stating that he wants to marry her.  

The chargesheet stated that Mahanand took her to an isolated spot behind Goa University library and killed her by strangulating her with her own Dupatta.

Her body was thrown in the bushes, after removing her gold ornaments.

Mahanand was booked for abduction to kill, murder, robbery and destruction of evidence.

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Previous Comments

Well done to Goa Police, for once again achieving another distinction or "feather in their cap" for proving to be the......... "MOST USELESS POLICE FORCE"... in the world & guardians of Law & Order in Goa.

Their achievements lies in the fact that they have the record, for the highest acquittal rates.

Preparing a "water-tight" case is not their strong point or forte .Most cases they prepare ,end up in acquittals.

Convictions are rare.

I sometimes wonder, if they are of any value for the Tax payers money.

It seems like Mahanand Naik, considered a serial rapist & murderer, is one step ahead of Goa Police. Perhaps he should be congratulated for proving,yet again & again that our hafta collecting Goa Police are a " JUVENILE DELINQUENT & Spent Force".

- N.Fernandes, London | 02 nd July 2013 19:30


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