HC rejects bail plea of 3 in Lakhan Bhaiya fake encounter case
Mumbai: Observing that there was enough material against them, the Bombay High Court on Friday rejected the bail pleas of three persons who were convicted in the case of fake encounter of Ramnarayan Gupta alias Lakhan Bhaiya at suburban Versova in 2006.
The bail pleas of Hitesh Solanki, Akhil Shirin Khan alias Bobby and Vinayak Shinde were rejected by a bench of Justices P V Hardas and Anuja Prabhudessai.
Their appeals against conviction were admitted last year. However, their bail pleas were decided today.
Another convict, Shailendra Pandey, whose bail plea was also heard today, has jumped parole. His lawyer today withdrew the bail petition saying his client would apply afresh after he surrenders.
The trio were convicted for their role in aiding and abetting the murder. They were accused of abducting Lakhan Bhaiyya leading to a fake encounter in which he was killed.
Lakhan Bhaiya was considered to be underworld don Chhota Rajan`s close aide. Four days after his killing, his brother moved the Bombay High Court alleging that Bhaiya was killed in cold blood by the Mumbai Police.
The inquiry in this case had found that the bullet that killed Lakhan Bhaiya was hit from point-blank range.
In another development, another convict in the same case, Janardhan Bhange was granted bail by the same bench which opined that evidence against him was "weak" as witnesses had turned hostile.
Bhange too was convicted by the trial court on charges of giving contract money to kill Lakhan Bhaiya. His appeal was also admitted earlier.
On July 13, 2013, the trial court had awarded life sentence to 21 people, including 13 Mumbai police personnel. The other eight were civilians. However, former encounter specialist in Mumbai Police force Pradeep Sharma was acquitted due to lack of evidence.
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