Phoolan Devi killer convicted, 10 others let off

Phoolan Devi killer convicted, 10 others let off

Phoolan Devi killer convicted, 10 others let off

Sher Singh Rana, the key accused in the 13-year-old sensational murder of bandit-turned-politician Phoolan Devi, was on Friday convicted by a Delhi court for killing the then Lok Sabha MP. The court acquitted 10 others facing trial in the case due to lack of evidence.

“Except Sher Singh Rana, I am acquitting all the accused. Sher Singh Rana is convicted for offences under sections 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder) and 34 (common intention) under the IPC,” Additional Sessions Judge Bharat Parashar said. Immediately after pronouncement of the verdict in the jampacked courtroom, 38-year-old Rana shot back, “Why have you convicted only me? Others were also there.”

The judge said the judgment has been passed on the basis of evidence brought before him and Rana can file an appeal.

“I have passed the judgment, you can file an appeal in the high court,” the judge said and fixed the case for August 12 for arguments and pronouncement of quantum of sentence.

The court convicted Rana on the grounds that his fingerprints were there on the pistol which was used for killing 37-year-old Phoolan, then a Samajwadi Party MP from Mirzapur constituency in Uttar Pradesh, in front of her Ashoka Road residence here on July 25, 2001. It also took into account that Rana’s car was used in the crime.

Initially, the verdict was scheduled to be passed at 2 pm but when the court assembled at the post-lunch session, the judge said he would pronounce the judgment at 4 pm as the order was not complete. Again at around 3:40 pm, the court assembled and Rana, Shekhar Singh, Rajbir Singh and Sharavan Kumar were produced before it from judicial custody while the co-accused, who were on bail, came to the court. 

After marking the presence of all the accused, the judge pronounced the verdict in the court. 

Delhi Police had chargesheeted 11 men for eliminating Phoolan to avenge the 1981 Behmai massacre in which she had allegedly killed a number of Thakurs.

The charge sheet had named Rana, Dhan Prakash, Shekhar Singh, Rajbir Singh, Vijay Singh, Rajender Singh, Keshav Chauhan, Praveen Mittal, Amit Rathi, Surender Singh Negi and Pradeep Singh as accused.