Aman Kachroo ragging case: Four seniors convicted

The offences attract maximum of a 10-year jail term

prasanna

Prasanna Mohanty | November 11, 2010



Four medical students were today convicted of culpable homicide not amounting to murder by a fast track court for ragging to death their junior Aman Kachroo in Himachal Pradesh last year.

The quantum of sentence is expected to be pronounced later in the day after the fast track court hears arguments of the Defence and the Prosecution. The offences for which the four students were held guilty are punishable with a maximum of a 10-year jail term.

Additional district and sessions judge Purinder Vaidya held the students guilty under sections 304 II (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 452 (house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint) and 34 (common intention) of IPC.

Nineteen-year-old Aman, a fresher of Rajendra Prasad Medical College and Hospital in Tanda, about 15 km from here in Kangra district, succumbed to injuries on March 8, 2009, after being allegedly ragged by final year students--Ajay Verma, Naveen Verma, Abhinav Verma and Mukul Sharma.

Reacting to the judgement, Aman's father Rajendra Kachroo termed it as a victory and said this is a message in loud and clear terms to people who still indulge in ragging.

"I see this as a victory not only for me but for the people who are fighting for judicial reforms, criminal reforms and against ragging. I see it as a victory," he said.

Kachroo said he is not unduly bothered over what punishment the four students would get. "The essence is not punishment. It is the prevention of crime," he added.

Kachroo said if he had not fought against the bail granted to the four accused earlier this year, "I would not have seen this verdict today."

Senior public prosecutor Jiwan Lal Sharma had contended that Aman was brutally beaten up under the garb of ragging by his four seniors and had succumbed to his injuries.

The court has recorded the statement of 38 witnesses, comprising doctors, police personnel and Aman's father during the trial.

Kachroo, appearing in court for the first time in the case on August 28 this year, had said his son spoke to him in detail about the incident of ragging that occurred in the college.

"Aman even told me that he had given in writing a complaint to college authorities regarding the (ragging) incident... Three to four hours after I got the phone call from Aman, somebody informed me on telephone from the college that he had passed away," he had told the court.

The court had also re-examined two doctors - Harjeet Pal Singh of the ENT department, and DP Swami, assistant professor of forensic medicine department of the hospital - who are related to this case.

On July 17, the fast track court had granted bail to all four accused in the case, but later the Himachal Pradesh High Court cancelled the bail of the accused.

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