The Bombay High Court sentenced a 52-year-old man to life imprisonment for murdering his wife,based on the testimony and the complaint of his 19-year-old son.
A division bench of Justice N V Dabholkar and Justice S P Davre on March 20 sentenced Roopsingh Barela to life imprisonment and also imposed a fine of Rs 500 on him,observing that if the accused was not the culprit,he should not have denied his presence with the victim,but be the first person to intimate his son about his mothers death. The bench also observed that he would have called for immediate medical attention.
According to the prosecution,the accused and victim Geenabai got married 20 years ago and are original residents of Madhya Pradesh,but had been staying in Dhule also. The couple also have a daughter,who had eloped with a boy 10 days before the murder of Geenabai,on March 6,2006. She is staying in a neighbouring village.
On the day of the incident,the accused and the victim went to meet their daughter with their relative Balu Barela. On their way,the couple got into a verbal spat and later the accused killed Geenabai by throwing a huge stone on her head. Immediately,Balu informed the complainant Guddya who rushed to spot and found his mother lying in a pool of blood.
Guddya lodged a complaint with the Thalner police who arrested Barela. During the trial,the prosecution examined four witnesses including Guddya. However,the lone eyewitness could not be examined as he died during the pendency of the trial.
Defence lawyer V A Shinde contented that the victims death was accidental. He also said the victim was suffering from epilepsy. But the court observed that the defence had not brought on record any medical records and the complainant Guddya had also denied that his mother was suffering from ailments,the bench said. The court also said the silence of the accused in not informing about the injuries to his wife speaks volumes. Further,the court held that the accused suffered from a suspicion syndrome. It has come out in the testimony of the complainant,which is the reason for the murder.