Guwahati molestation: 11 accused get two years jail, four let off
A local court Friday convicted 11 of the total 16 accused of the infamous G.S. Road molestation case here and sentenced them to two years jail each. Four were acquitted due to lack of evidence while one accused was found to be a juvenile.
Pronouncing the verdict, Kamrup Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) S.P. Moitra sentenced each of the eleven convicts including prime accused Amarjyoti Kalita to two years rigorous imprisonment. A fine of Rs.3,000 was also slapped on each of them.
The verdict further mentioned that the period of imprisonment already undergone by the convicts during investigation and trial will be adjusted against their term.
The convicted include Puspendra Das, Sikandar Basfor, Dhanraj Basfor, Nabajyoti Baruah, Nabajyoti Deka, Deepak Deb, Rubul Ali, Deba Das, Rupkanta Kalita and Ghanasyham Kumar Malik, while the court acquitted local television channel journalist Gaurav Jyoti Neog, Hafizuddin, Diganta Basumatary and Jitumoni Deka due to lack of evidence.
Police had arrested a total of 16 people for their involvement in the infamous case July 9 that rocked the entire country. However, one of the accused was found to be a minor and his case was being heard in the Juvenile Justice Court.
All the accused were currently on bail.
Advcate Bhaskar Dev Konwar, who represented the 11 accused, said that they are not happy with the judgement and they would approach a higher court.
"We have submitted an application to the CJM as we are not satisfied with the judgement. Since we have the statutory right to appeal before the sessions court within 30 days, we have also approached the court to uphold the existing bail of the convicts during the appeal period," Konwar said.
A group of men publicly molested and stripped a teenage girl outside a pub in Guwahati July 9 evening. The incident created a country-wide furore after the video clip of it was telecast and the visuals went viral on the internet.
Kalita, the main accused, remained absconding since July 9 but finally surrendered to Varanasi police in Uttar Pradesh July 23.
The government had constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT), headed by Superintendent of Police (Operations) Ranjan Bhuyan, to deal with the case. The SIT submitted a charge sheet Sep 4 listing the 16 as accused.