Allahabad: Three decades after their acquittal by a lower court, all the accused in a 1978 murder case of Basti district in Uttar Pradesh have been convicted by the Allahabad High Court which awarded sentences up to life imprisonment.
A division bench comprising Justice Rakesh Tiwari and Justice Kalimullah Khan yesterday allowed a government appeal challenging the order passed by the sessions judge of Basti district on May 25, 1981 whereby the accused - three of whom have since died while the nine surviving ones are now in the age group of 60-75 years - had been acquitted in the case relating to murder of four persons.
The impugned judgment was passed in connection with an attack on a group of villagers on July 3, 1978 at Nadaya village in Chhaoni police station area of Basti in which four persons had succumbed to gunshot injuries while three others, including two women, were grievously wounded.
All the persons named as accused in the case had been acquitted by the trial court which gave them the "benefit of doubt".
However, the High Court was of the view that the trial court order was "not based on correct appreciation of evidence" and that the prosecution had "fully proved its case beyond all reasonable doubts".