Man sentenced to life imprisonment for killing wife

"No doubt the facts shows that the convict had beaten up his wife and thereafter strangulated her. This is a brutal act on his part. The convict is sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for life," said Additional Sessions Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar, while sentencing Govind Puri resident Inderpal Singh.

On August 11, 2008, Singh had reported to the police that his wife Sunita had committed suicide by hanging herself from a ceiling fan at his house in Govindpuri near Kalkaji in South Delhi.

But the woman's postmortem revealed that her body, in fact, was hanged after she was beaten up and strangulated to death. She was also found having ante mortem injuries on her head and legs, following which Singh was arrested.

During the probe, it also transpired that Singh and Sunita did not have a cordial relation and the woman stayed with her mother.

She had also filed a complaint against Singh in 2008 under the Domestic Violence Act and had been granted maintenance by a court in May 2008. But no maintenance was ever paid by Singh.

Sunita's brother-in-law deposed in the court that Singh suspected them of having an illicit relationship, which often became a cause of discord between the couple.

Singh's son also told the court that his father Inderpal used to beat his mother under influence of liquor and used to ask her to bring money from her parents. He told the court that on the day of the murder, his mother had gone to attend the Lok Adalat but never returned.

The police during its probe had also discovered that Singh on July 25, 2008, approached the Delhi Legal Services Authority (DLSA) at Gole Market, seeking its help for an amicable settlement with Sunita and had taken his wife there on August 11, 2008.

The police also found that after a counselling session at DLSA, Singh took Sunita to his residence at Govindpuri.

During the trial, Singh said that his wife Sunita had inflicted self-injuries on her legs and had threatened him to lodge a case against him for beating her up, after which, he said, he left the house, but, on return, found his wife hanging from the ceiling fan.

He pleaded that the fact that he had approached DLSA for a compromise with his wife proves his innocence.

The court, however, rejected his plea saying, "If seen from another angle, it could be a plan of the accused as well to bring the deceased to a compromise table to persuade her to visit his house and then to finish her off."

Also relying upon the prosecution argument that Singh's doubt over his wife's fidelity was the motive behind murder, the court said, "The evidence brought on record leads to only logical conclusion that it was none other than the accused who had strangulated the deceased."

The court, however, rejected prosecution plea for death sentence to Singh, saying that the case did not fall in the rarest of rare category warranting capital punishment.

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