HC calls on police to comment on Ansals’ plea to suspend prison sentence in falsified evidence case



The Delhi High Court on Wednesday called for a response from the Delhi Police to appeals by real estate barons Sushil and Gopal Ansal requesting the suspension of their seven-year prison sentences for tampering with evidence in the 1997 case of the fire at the Uphaar cinema which left 59 people dead.

Judge Subramonium Prasad issued an opinion on the petitions and also requested a response from the complainant, the Association of Victims of the Uphaar Tragedy.

On December 3, Extra Sessions Judge Anil Antil rejected Ansals’ request to stay their conviction and jail term in the case of tampering with evidence by a district court and refused to release the convicts on bail. .

Lead attorney Mukul Rohatgi, representing the applicants, challenged the Sessions Tribunal’s order and argued that the seven-year sentence exceeded the maximum sentence that could be imposed in the case.

He argued that the conviction was based on a “bad legal premise” and pointed out that even in the main case, the applicants were found guilty and sentenced to 2 years in prison by the Supreme Court, which gave them a was then released on payment of a fine of 30 crore rupees each. after taking into account the prison time they had done.

While dismissing Ansals’ plea for the stay of the sentence until the appeal against the conviction by the high court is decided, the Sessions Court had declared the case to be one of the most serious of the kind and that the offense seemed to be the result of a design calculated on the part of the convicts to obstruct the course of justice.

The Sessions Court also refused to suspend the seven-year prison sentence for former court staff Dinesh Chand Sharma and two others – PP Batra and Anoop Singh – in the case and to release them on bail.

“The nature of the crime is such that it strikes the very edifice of the functioning of the tribunal. A guilty verdict has already been pronounced by the court of first instance. Thus the presumption of innocence which attaches to the accused during the trial of the case does not apply at the stage of the consideration of the stay of the sentence, by which the appellants / accused are guilty by the court. concerned ”, declared the court of sessions.

The Sessions Tribunal added that suspending sentences at this stage would not only violate established principles of criminal law, but would undermine public confidence in the justice system.

Senior lawyer Vikas Pahwa, representing the Association of Victims of the Uphaar Tragedy (AVUT), opposed the appeals and told the court that the forgery offense was extremely serious as it affects the whole of the criminal justice system.

Delhi Police had also opposed Ansals’ scope of appeal and told the courtroom that it would trigger mental trauma and agony for the victims.

Additional prosecutor AT Ansari, appearing for the agency, told the court that the sentence brought comfort to the victims of the tragedy and boosted their confidence in the justice system after 24 years.

The district court also fined each of the Ansals rupees 2.25 crore, in addition to imposing a seven-year sentence in the case.

The forgery was first detected on July 20, 2002, and when it was discovered, a ministerial investigation was opened against Sharma and he was suspended.

Later, an investigation was carried out and he was fired on June 25, 2004.

The case was brought to the direction of the Delhi High Court during the hearing of a petition from AVUT President Neelam Krishnamoorthy.

The case will be heard on January 6.

(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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