MUMBAI: The Ahmednagar District and Session court Friday pronounced death sentence to three men convicted of raping and murdering a schoolgirl at Loni-Mawala village in Parner district in 2014.
The court sentenced Santosh Lonkar (36), Mangesh Lonkar (30) and Dattatreya Shinde (27) to death by hanging in charges of the heinous crime they committed on August 22, 2014.
The three accused had chased the tenth standard student, raped and murdered her mercilessly. Witnesses examined and circumstantial pieces of evidence make it clear that the murder was a preconceived act and hence they need to be awarded the highest possible sentence, the prosecution lawyer Ujjwal Nikam had argued while demanding a death sentence. The argument was upheld by the court of district judge Suvarna Kevale.
According to the case report, prime accused Santosh Lonkar had been harassing her and had even threatened her with life before the incident on August 22. That day he along with his two other friends chased the victim from her school to the crime site. They raped her and crammed down her throat with the mud so that she won't be able to shout. After raping her Santosh hit the victim with a screwdriver, while Mangesh hit her with a boulder in the head and Dattatreya held her legs tightly. After killing her, they covered her body with mud thinking that it would decompose.
The dead body of the girl was found under a bridge near her village on 22 August 2017.
During the preliminary examination, it was clear that she was murdered after the gang-rape. Police inspector Sharad Jambhale had arrested the three accused within four days.
The prosecution examined 32 witnesses in the case including the doctor, police, parents and friends of the victim and had produced 24 evidences. The accused were pronounced guilty of rape and murder on November 3.