Mumbai: Twelve years after a man was booked for abetment to suicide of his wife, the sessions court in Kalyan has convicted him and awarded five years of imprisonment.
According to the prosecution, accused Shaniwar Wargada had married Mamta on March 2002 and the couple was staying in Badlapur in the neighbouring Thane district. "Wargada and his mother used to harass Mamata and would demand money. However, since she came from a very poor family, she could not meet their demands," Public Prosecutor Jyoti Lohokare said.
According to Lohokare, in October 2002 Mamta sustained 97 percent burns after a fire at their house and was declared dead on arrival at a nearby hospital. Mamta's father approached the Badlapur police and filed a case under section 304b (dowry death) and section 498 A (cruelty) against Wargada and his mother, who were arrested by the police.
The court subsequently granted bail to them. "Though the case happened in 2002, the hearing was held only in December 2013, as the matter was shifted from court to court and also due to pendency of cases," said Lohokare. Lohokare argued that the victim's husband had not given any explanation as to how the fire started in the house and he did not try to save her. He examined six witnesses to prove the case.
Additional judge A Z Telgote acquitted Wargade for dowry death, but convicted him for abetment of suicide and cruelty and sentenced him to five years imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs 500. Wargade's mother was acquitted.