The Thiruvananthapuram Principal Sessions Court on Friday awarded life imprisonment to four persons who were found guilty in the Kannadi Shaji murder case.
Judge B Sudheendrakumar awarded first and second accused - Ambalamukku Krishnakumar and Sanish- life sentence with a rider for 20 years, which means that they would not be given parole or remission. The other two accused- Jayalal and Syam - were just given life sentence. A penalty of `25,000 each was also imposed on the accused, a default in payment of which would add two more years of imprisonment to the sentence. The verdict on this case is considered as a landmark one in the history of T’Puram District Court as it is after a long gap of over a decade that a case on gangland murder reached the stage of conviction. According to the chargesheet, 12 persons were accused in the case. The court had dropped charges against eight of the accused as the prosecution failed to prove the charges against them. The prosecution team led by District Government Pleader S K Asok Kumar and advocates R Ajaya Kumar, Poudikonam S Radhakrishnan and Kovalam B Vijayan had argued that it was important to punish the accused because it would give out a strong message to the criminals out in the society.
They argued that no one had the authority to kill a person. Meanwhile, the counsel for the convicts pleaded to minimise the punishment as the victim was also a social menace, being a notorious gangster. The incident happened on Nov 12, 2011 when Kannadi Shaji, who was a notorious gangster, was waylaid and killed at Chithra Nagar in Kowdiar, where he resided. The murder was allegedly committed in retaliation for the murder of two gangsters.