A month after he raped and murdered a seven-year-old girl here, Pradeep Dalei was awarded death penalty on Monday. A native of Barang near Bhubaneswar, Pradeep, was sentenced to death by the District and Sessions Judge, Sambalpur.
The Judge, Bibhu Prasad Routray, who held Pradeep guilty under Section 302 of IPC, described the crime as “an inhuman act” and observed that the convict deserved death penalty.
The crime had taken place on September 2. The Judge had held the accused guilty on October 1 and announced sentence on Monday. The verdict was pronounced after examining 12 witnesses besides circumstantial evidences. He was also sentenced for life with a fine of Rs 7,000 under Section 376 of IPC in default of which, he has to undergo an additional 18-month imprisonment.
In addition, he was given another 10 years of rigorous imprisonment under Section 366 of IPC and fined ` 5,000 and in failure of payment of fine, he shall have to undergo an additional imprisonment of one year. He has also been sentenced to five years of imprisonment under Section 201 IPC and a fine of Rs 1,000. In default of payment, he will have to serve imprisonment for six more months. The accused will undergo all the sentences concurrently.
As per reports, on September 2, Pradeep lured the girl with fast food. Since he happened to be an acquaintance of the girl’s family and resided in the neighbourhood, the girl went out with him. But when she did not return home till late in the night, her family members lodged a missing complaint.
Later, people in the neighbourhood informed her parents of seeing her going out with Pradeep. However, when her parents questioned Pradeep about her whereabouts, he feigned ignorance. Her body was found on September 3 along the Ring Road at Mandalia under Khetrajpur police limits.
Police said Pradeep, a driver by profession, was married with two children. During interrogation, he had admitted to have committed the crime in an inebriated condition.