Bengaluru: The State High Court has upheld the conviction and life imprisonment sentence handed down by the trial court to four students, including two girls from Mumbai, for kidnapping and murdering their friend for money.
The convicts – Rohit Kumar from Jharkhand, Shivani Thakur, and Preeti Raj from Mumbai and Vareesh from Bihar – had filed separate appeals.
However, a division bench headed by Justice B. Veerappa has rejected their pleas, stating the four had not only committed the crime of murder but attempted to dispose off the body and destroy evidence.
According to available records, the two girls have developed friendship with the victim and became close to him. The other two had kidnapped him for money.
The prosecution has proved charges against all accused persons and conspiracy behind the murder. After verifying the evidence, there seems to be no need for the High Court to intervene in the matter of the judgment by the local court, the bench said.
Tushar, the deceased had come to Bengaluru from Rajasthan along with his classmate, accused Vareesh. He hailed from a rich family and Vareesh had planned to make money after kidnapping him. As part of the conspiracy, Vareesh had introduced Tushar to his relatives Preeti and Shivani.
On January 14, 2011 Tushar went missing. After seven days, police had recovered his body near Yelahanka. The investigations revealed that Tushar had last been seen with the two girls.
Ayushman Lal, a classmate of Tushar, had told police that he had got a message from Tushar on his mobile that he was consuming liquor with the girls and he would return to room late but never returned.
The accused had called the victim’s father from his mobile and demanded Rs 10 lakh from him claiming that they had kidnapped Tushar. The police had arrested accused Rohit Kumar, when he came to collect money. Later, all accused were arrested.
The 15th Fast Track Court in Bengaluru had convicted the accused and sentenced them to life imprisonment on November 6, 2014.