A HIT-AND-RUN case accused, Harjasneet Singh Chahal, who allegedly ran over 75-year-old Subodh Kumar Gupta in August 2017 at Sector 10, surrendered in the district court, Chandigarh, on Thursday. Chahal has been sent to one-day judicial custody and will be produced in the district court on Friday. The accused surrendered in the court of Imanbir Singh Dhaliwal, Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMIC). Chahal surrendered after the Supreme Court denied him bail on March 19.
According to police, the incident occurred on August 6, 2017, on the opposite road of the Sector 10 market. When Gupta, a resident of Sector 4, was trying to cross the road, an SUV, driven by Harjasneet Singh Chahal (27), a native of Bathinda, hit Gupta, leaving him in a pool of blood. The victim was rushed to Government Multi-Specialty Hospital (GMSH) Sector 16, Chandigarh, where doctors declared him brought dead. Although Chahal managed to escape, the police registered a case against him under sections 279 (rash driving or riding on a public way) and 304A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code at Sector 3 Police Station, Chandigarh.
The incident was recorded on a CCTV camera and after taking leads from it, the UT Police arrested the accused from Bathinda two days later. But, Chahal was granted bail as the sections imposed on him were bailable.
The victim’s family, meanwhile, approached the police, demanding strict action against the accused. Later, Section 304 II (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of IPC, a non-bailable offence, was added to the FIR. But, the accused still remained out of police custody. In January, the UT police had also announced a reward of Rs 25,000 on Chahal after the High Court rejected his bail application on December 12, 2017, and non-bailable warrants were issued against him, but to no avail.
“I took recourse to legal remedies and after the Supreme Court denied bail to me, I myself surrendered in three days,” said Chahal. Chahal’s counsel, advocate Khushdeep Singh Maan, said that after his client was arrested, he had joined the investigation, launched by the UT police, and the lower court granted him bail. Thereafter, the offence, under Section 304 II, was added and the lower court rejected his bail. Then, a bail plea was filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, wherein interim bail was granted. But, it was rejected on December 20, 2017, following which we moved the Supreme Court.”
Advocate Tarminder Singh, counsel for Gupta, said, “The accused has been absconding since the High Court denied him bail, and now, after the proclaimed offender proceedings were being initiated against him, he surrendered in court today.”
Neeti Goyal, daughter of the victim, said, “We are happy that the culprit is finally in custody and we hope to get justice from the court now.”