(MENAFN- AsiaNet News) A Delhi High Court bench comprising Justices Suresh Kumar Kait and Manoj Jain on Monday (February 12) granted interim relief to Ravi Kapoor, Amit Shukla, Baljeet Singh Malik, and Ajay Kumar, convicted in the murder case of journalist Soumya Vishwanathan. The court suspended their sentences pending the outcome of their appeals challenging the conviction.
Vishwanathan, employed with a prominent English news channel, was shot dead on September 30, 2008. On November 26, 2023, the special court had sentenced the four convicts to two life terms under IPC Section 302 and MCOCA Section 3(1)(i).
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The court clarified that the sentences would run consecutively. The fifth convict, Ajay Sethi, received three years of simple imprisonment, but the court offset the sentence against the time served.
Kapoor's plea for suspension of the sentence during the appeal's pendency was accepted by the high court. Kapoor, Shukla, and Malik were also convicted in the murder of IT professional Jigisha Ghosh. They confessed to being involved in Vishwanathan's murder, and the murder weapon was recovered from them.
The high court's decision provides a temporary reprieve for the convicts, who had already spent a considerable time in custody. The bench acknowledged their 14-year incarceration and decided to suspend the sentence during the appeals. The court had earlier rejected Kapoor's parole request, considering the gravity of the offenses.
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This development is a significant legal turn in a case that has seen multiple convictions and a prolonged legal process. The interim suspension of the sentence allows the convicts some relief until the final decision on their appeals is reached.
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