Nearly four years after the Amboli double murder, the Mumbai Sessions court today sentenced all four accused to life imprisonment till death. The four accused, Jitendra Rana, Satish Dulhaj, Sunil Bodh and Dipak Tivala, were convicted for killing Keenan Santos (24) and Reuben Fernandez (29), and injuring five others in October 2011. The incident occurred near Amboli Bar and Kitchen.
While all four were convicted for murder, Rana and Dulhaj were found guilty of molestation as well.
(From left) Reuben Fernandez and Keenan Santos along with their friend Avinash Solanki
A local court framed charges against four accused in October 2012 for murder, conspiracy and molestation. During trial, Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam had examined 25 witnesses including five eyewitnesses, which included two female friends of the deceased. All the accused have been in jail since their arrest.
Seven friends, Keenan, Reuben, Shobhita Singh, Priyanka Fernandez, Avinash Solanki, Benjamin Fernandes and one more unnamed person, on October 20, 2011, went to watch a match and for dinner at a restaurant at Amboli, Andheri.
After paying bill, when they were having paan, near the restaurant, Rana, who was present there, passed vulgar comments and molested one of women. The male friends objected to it. What began as a small fight turned out to be a tragic incident. Rana and Dulhaj went away, but returned with a few others, along with weapons, and attacked the boys in the group.
Keenan who was seriously injured died on same day while Reuben succumbed to death after 10 days. Police arrested all the four accused in the wee hours of next day.