Three in Assam get life term for setting woman on fire after tiff over 'stolen' egg

On August 18, 2014, the trio had burnt alive the victim, Rubi Pandit, with kerosene at her Radhanagar residence in Hojai district following an altercation over the 'theft' of an egg.

Published: 13th June 2019 04:37 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th June 2019 07:24 PM   |  A+A-

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For representational purposes

Express News Service

GUWAHATI: Five years after a woman in Assam was burnt alive over an incident involving an egg, a local court in the state sentenced three people, including a couple, to life imprisonment.

The Court of District and Sessions Judge in Central Assam’s Hojai convicted Shyamoli Biswas, her husband Mohan Biswas and their relative Moni Mazumdar under Sections 448 and 302 of the IPC on June 10. The quantum of punishment was pronounced on Wednesday.

On August 18, 2014, the trio had burnt alive the victim, Rubi Pandit, with kerosene at her Radhanagar residence in Hojai district following an altercation over the 'theft' of an egg.

Apparently, a hen, owned by Shyamoli and Mohan, had laid an egg at the victim’s house. When they went to bring it, the victim shouted at them, calling them thieves which led to an argument. Later, the three convicts set fire to the victim with kerosene.

The victim had jumped into a nearby pond to save her life as advised by the convicts. Later, she was pulled out of it by some locals and taken to a hospital in Jugijan. From there, she was rushed to Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) in Guwahati but she succumbed to her injuries soon after. In her dying statement given at the Jugijan hospital, the victim had narrated the entire incident.

The court said it was evident that prior to the incident, there was an altercation between the victim and the convicts over the issue. 

“…After some time in the absence of the victim’s husband at the house, Shyamoli Biswas, Mohan Biswas and Moni Mazumdar entered her house. Shyamoli caught hold of the victim and Mohan and Moni set her ablaze by pouring kerosene on her. They told the victim that if you want to save your life then jump into the pond. At that time, they started shouting and called the people and told them that she set fire by herself. Some people came and took her out of the pond and brought her to Jugijan primary health centre where first aid was provided and her dying declaration was recorded. The victim was referred to the GMCH where she succumbed to her injuries. It was premeditated to cause the victim’s death and accordingly, all three of them colluded to execute it,” the court of NS Deori said in the judgement.

It added: “After careful assessment of evidence on record in its entirety, this court arrived at the conclusion that the prosecution could prove the offence under Sections 448/302 of IPC beyond all reasonable doubt. The court holds the accused persons guilty of the offence and they are convicted.”

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