A Mumbai sessions court, on Wednesday, awarded death sentence to the convict in kidnapping-cum-murder case. The 27-year old convict, Imtiaz Shaikh, had kidnapped 12-year old, Shree Bhandge, son of Imtiaz’s ex employer, Rajesh Bhandge, and killed him before asking for a ransom of Rs. 25 Lakh. Imtiaz, reportedly, committed the crime to make the score with his ex employer, Rajesh Bhandge, who had fired him 8 months before the crime was committed due to his disorderly work behaviour. Imtiaz got angry by his termination and planned to teach Rajesh a lesson. He, along with others were held in June 2012 from Bhiwandi after police tracked the calls and location from where the calls were made. The other accused, Azad Ansari (27) was awarded life imprisonment for being involved in the conspiracy.
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Two other accused, Israr Shaikh (25) and Arsil Ahmed (44), who are on bail since the registration of the case, were acquitted due to lack of evidence against them. The last accused who is a juvenile, the court said that he will be tried separately. They key witnesses in the case were a ‘Gola Wala’ from Juhu Beach who had witnessed Imtiaz and co-accused Azad with the victim before the murder took place the same day. The other witness was a waiter of a restaurant who could briefly recollect Imtiaz and Azad with the victim when they had come to have food in his restaurant. The third witness was the roommate of one of the accused who recollected that the boy (victim) was there at home and was introduced as Imtiaz’s nephew. The Judge, Dattatray P Satawalekar, found the crime to be rarest of rare and commented that leniancy to the convict will send a wrong message to the society. The death sentence needs to be confirmed by Bombay High Court before sealing the file with the death sentence verdict.
According to Mohan Sawant, Public Prosecutor
It was in May 2012 that Imtiaz along with another colleague, Azad Ansari, allegedly abducted Rajesh’s son and killed him the same day in the fear of getting into serious trouble if the son is alive. The body of the victim was wrapped in a gunny bag and dumped in an open manhole located on Bhiwandi highway. He, subsequently, kept demanding Rs. 25 Lakh ransom from Rajesh citing his son is alive and made 7-8 calls from different SIM cards but using the same mobile phone. The police tracked down the call details and booked Imtiaz and Azad from Bhiwandi. They took police to the Manhole where the 12-year old victim was dumped.
Mohan Sawant highlighted the ‘cruelty’ involved in the gruesome murder of the innocent 12-year old victim and the reason for killing him brutally. He said, “Post-mortem reports showed about eight to nine injuries on the body of the boy. The child was physically assaulted in a manner in which his ribs had broken and severe injuries were caused to the lungs and heart, and he died,” He added that the merciless convict, Imtiaz, still made calls to Rajesh assuring that his son is alive and that he needs the ransom to release him. The voice sample of Imtiaz matched with the recorded ransom calls made after Rajesh’s son went missing.
We feel the false hopes even after the murder of the victim to his father is another instance that the convict has no feeling and can be dangerous to the society. We look forward to see the inference by Bombay High Court once it reaches there.
(With inputs from Times of India and News Agency)