Prosecution failed on many counts, says judge

Prosecution failed on many counts, says judge

Pasuvanna and Nagarajan, who were acquitted, outside the court in Gobichettipalayam, Erode district, on Tuesday. DH Photo/E T B Sivapriyan

Gobichettipalayam (TN): The prosecution failed to build a water-tight case against the nine men accused in the Rajkumar abduction case and failed to prove that they were connected to the case and had links with forest brigand Veerappan, the judge said. 

Reading out portions of his detailed judgement in an open court, third additional district judge K Mani posed a number of questions to the prosecution – why there was delay in filing FIR, why Rajkumar, his wife Parvathamma, Nakheeran Gopal, Pazha Nedumaran and other interlocutors were not questioned and why the agency took 10 months to produce evidence before the court.

Delay questioned

“The FIR was filed by Thalavadi police only 24 hours after Rajkumar was abducted, though the actor’s wife Parvathamma reached Bengaluru at 4 am the next day (July 31, 2000), met the chief minister and intimated him about the incident. Why the delay?” the judge said.

He also sought to know why the weapons which were allegedly used during the crime were not sealed on the spot, according to the Supreme Court direction.

Judge Mani also asked the CB-CID, which took over the investigation, as to why it did not conduct an identification parade of the accused after Rajkumar was released from the jungles. 

“If such a parade was conducted, it would have been very clear whether those held captive had seen any of these people inside the forest. The government-appointed interlocutors like Nakheeran Gopal, Pazha Nedumaran and others were also not questioned. Why weren’t key people questioned?,” the judge said.

The judge asked the prosecution why the houses of the accused were not searched. “If these men are accused, why were their houses not searched? The prosecution failed to provide even a shred of evidence to show that these men were connected with Veerappan,” he said.

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