Sentencing in Sonai murders tomorrow

first_imgThe sessions court in Nashik on Thursday reserved judgement in the 2013 Sonai killings till January 20.Earlier this week, the court convicted six of the seven men of murdering three Dalit men, Sachin Gharu (24), Sandeep Thanvar (25) and Rahul Kandare (20), in Sonai village in Ahmednagar. They victims’ mutilated body parts had been scattered in a septic tank and a dried-up well.Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam, presenting his concluding arguments, urged the court to award the death penalty to the six convicts — Ramesh Vishwanath Darandale (43), Prakash Vishwanath Darandale (38), Ragunath Vishwanath Darandale alias Popat (52), Ganesh alias Praveen Darandale (23), Sandeep Kurhe (37) and Ashok Phalke (44). Ramesh, Prakash and Popat are brothers — considering the gory nature of the murders.Speaking outside the courtroom, Mr. Nikam said, “The murders are a blot on humanity and a cruel reminder of caste prejudices. A conspiracy was hatched by the Darandales [who belong to the Maratha community] and the plan was carried out with incredible brutality just because a boy from ‘backward’ caste fell in love with a girl from a ‘higher’ caste and the couple were set to marry.” Such violent incidents only serve to perpetuate and exacerbate caste tensions, he said. All three victims were the sole breadwinners in their families and belonged to the Mehtar (Bhangi) community. They were hacked to death by the Darandales on January 1, 2013. Sachin Gharu had reportedly fallen in love with the daughter of one of the Darandales. Sachin’s mother, Kalabai, said, “My son, my sole support in old age, was cruelly snatched away from me just because he fell in love with a girl from a different caste. Nothing but death by hanging will do for the murderers.”According to the FIR, Gharu and the other two worked as sweepers the Trimurti Pavan Pratishthan School and College in Ahmednagar’s Nevasa Phata, around 30 km from Sonai village. The girl studied at the same place.last_img

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