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Sushil Kumar bail plea opposed: ‘Hunted junior wrestler like wild animals’

“They were behaving like wild animals on a hunt. They hunted him (Sagar) like wild pigs. He was flailing on the floor while they mercilessly beat him,” Special Public Prosecutor Atul Kumar Srivastava told the court.

Written by Anand Mohan J | New Delhi |
Updated: October 5, 2021 7:05:20 pm
Sushil Kumar and his associate Ajay Sherawat after their arrest in Delhi. (Express photo by Gajendra Yadav)

The prosecution Tuesday opposed the bail plea of Olympic medalist and wrestler Sushil Kumar in the Chhatrasal Stadium murder case, submitting that the accused hunted a 27-year-old wrestler like “wild animals out on a hunt”.

The Delhi Police chargesheet filed in the murder of junior wrestler Sagar Dhankar has accused Sushil of being the kingpin of the conspiracy.

Special Public Prosecutor Atul Kumar Srivastava opposed Kumar’s bail before Additional Sessions Judge Shivaji Anand by drawing the court’s attention to the fact the police had video footage of the assault.

“They were behaving like wild animals on a hunt. They hunted him (Sagar) like wild pigs. He was flailing on the floor while they mercilessly beat him,” Srivastava told the court.

This is Kumar’s first bail application filed by his lawyer Pradeep Rana who opened his arguments stating that the police officers who were made witnesses in this case gave their statements after an unexplained delay.

Rana told the court, “In this case, twelve persons were present and none of them made a statement against me (Kumar). They make a statement after a delay of weeks and in some cases a month. This is because the police are trying to conceal something.”

Rana told the court that the police fabricated the case against Sushil by relying on supplementary statements of the witnesses to improve or rectify the mistakes in the original statements. Additional Public Prosecutor Atul Shrivastava, who appeared for the state, rebutted this by stating that there is no bar on recording supplementary statements.

Rana told the court that one head constable who was said to have brought Dhankar to the hospital was never present at the hospital and that the dying declaration made by the wrestler was “up in the air”. He further brought up the statement of a sub-inspector who made his statement after 40 days and submitted that this “delay in recording of the statements has not been explained”.

Srivastava began his rebuttal by first reading out the forensic assistant’s opinion on Kumar’s behaviour to state that he “showed no signs of remorse or guilt”, “was extremely ego-centric and he behaved as he thought that he is above the law”.

The court then asked Srivastava to stick to the facts of the case and not concentrate on the opinion at this stage of the case.

Srivastava told the court that he wanted to show “what kind of person Kumar was” and submitted that the delay in recording the witness statements can be explained.

“We are also humans. In the case of the SI recording the statement after 40 days, the officer had a serious medical condition and hence the delay. Even if a person comes after years his statement can be recorded,” Srivastava told the court.

Police have chargesheeted 13 accused persons under IPC Sections 302 (punishment for murder) 307 (attempt to murder), 147 (punishment for rioting), and 120 (B) criminal conspiracy among other sections. There are 155 prosecution witnesses in this case.

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