HC awards life term to youth for killing father

New Delhi: A youth accused of strangulating his father to death has been sentenced to life term in jail by the Delhi High Court.

A bench of justices Pradeep Nandrajog and Mukta Gupta refused to release Manmohan and upheld the trial court's decision awarding him life imprisonment. "The trinity of circumstances of Manmohan having a very strong motive, being the only other occupant of the building apart from his father and being present in the house when his father died and he having attempted to pass off his father's death as a natural death are sufficient to unerringly point the finger of guilt at him because he also failed to render a satisfactory explanation of how his father died," the court said.

The court order came on a appeal filed by Manmohan against the trial court decision convicting and sentencing him to life term. In his appeal, he had said the trial court had wrongly held him guilty for the crime as he was not present in the house at the time of the offence.

The prosecution said that deceased Chiranji Lal was the owner of a house at Nand Nagri here and used to live on the first floor with younger son Manmohan residing along with his wife on the ground floor. The fact that Manmohan married for a second time after his first wife died was probably not acceptable to Manmohan's father and brothers, the prosecution had said, adding that this was the cause of tension between the father and son.

It had further said that the relations became so "acrimonious" that Lal sought to evict his son and had also obtained an order of eviction. "Lal used to take his meals outside. The father and son used to have frequent quarrels. Faced with eviction, Manmohan strangulated his father to death on June 19, 2007," the police had said.

While upholding the sentence, the high court also noted that the prosecution has successfully established that apart from Lal who used to reside on the first floor of the house, only Manmohan and his wife were the other inhabitants of the building, residing on the ground floor.

"It assumes importance that relationship between Chiranji Lal and Manmohan were highly inimical and as recent as on May 26, 2007 (the date of the incident being June 19, 2007) Lal had obtained a decree for possession against Manmohan.

"Faced with a loss of roof over his head, Manmohan had a very strong motive to dispatch his father to the world beyond," the high court noted in its judgement.

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