A man was acquitted of the charge of murder by the Chandigarh district court on Thursday after the complainant turned hostile in court. The accused, 23-year-old Mohammad Aftab alias Chotu, was acquitted by District and Sessions Judge Balbir Singh from Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code.
The incident occurred on August 19, 2016, when Aftab, a labourer, allegedly stabbed 25-year-old Hitesh to death over a financial dispute. The victim and the accused were friends who used to meet at the Gobindpura market quite often and also used to drink together. However, due to some financial dispute, the accused killed Aftab killed Hitesh following an altercation. Hitesh, a native of Himachal Pradesh and living at Gobindpura here in Manimajra, used to work at a car radiator repair shop at the Manimajra motor market.
The complainant, Hitesh’s landlord Sunita Rani, alleged that Aftab had come to meet Hitesh in the morning when she overheard the accused threatening the victim to return the money. Though the argument was sorted out by neighbours, Aftab went away saying he would come back again to teach Hitesh a lesson. The incident took place in the evening when the victim and the accused engaged in a verbal spat. Soon, the argument turned violent and Aftab stabbed Hitesh with a sharp weapon. The victim was stabbed multiple times in the chest and stomach by the accused who managed to flee leaving the victim in a pool of blood. Hitesh was found in a critical condition by a passer-by who informed police. A PCR car came and took the victim to Government Multi-Specialty Hospital (GMSH) Sector 16 which referred Hitesh to PGI where doctors declared him brought dead. A case was registered on the complaint of Sunita Rani at Manimajra Police Station.
During the trial, the counsel for defence, Gagan Aggarwal, argued that the CFSL report was not positive about the samples as the knife recovered by the police and blood stains on the clothes of the accused did not match with the victim’s blood group while there were discrepancies, too, in the statements of police officials in court. Besides, the complainant in the case, Sunita Rani, was also declared hostile when she said that the incident did not take place in front of her.
So, after hearing the arguments of both sides, the court acquitted Mohammad Aftab of the charge of murder.