Man gets death penalty in Dalit student rape case

A court in Ernakulam on Thursday sentenced to death Ameerul Islam, a migrant worker from Assam, who was convicted of rape and murder of Jisha – a 30-year-old Dalit law student from Perumbavoor.

The Ernakulam Principal Sessions Court pronounced the sentence two days after it convicted Ameerul for the crime committed on April 28, 2016.

Judge N Anilkumar had found Ameerul guilty on charges under sections 302 (murder), 376 (rape), 376A (inflicting injury causing death or a persistent vegetative state), 342 (wrongful confinement) and 449 (trespassing) of the Indian Penal Code. It also sentenced Ameerul to a life imprisonment, 10 years rigorous imprisonment, seven years’ imprisonment and a one-year imprisonment under sections 376A, 376, 449 and 342 respectively, and awarded a total fine of Rs 1 lakh. The sentences will run concurrently.

Ameerul’s lawyer B A Aloor said his client would appeal against the verdict before the High Court. Jisha’s mother Rajeswari thanked the court for its verdict.

The gruesome rape and murder had left Jisha’s body mutilated with 38 injuries including deep stab wounds. Investigating the case in which there were no eye-witnesses, the police built its case on scientific and circumstantial evidences.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the verdict was a judicial endorsement of the government’s stand that there would be no compromise on women’s safety.

Jisha was found dead in her single-room home by her mother on April 28, 2016. In May, the investigating team managed to collect the suspect’s DNA sample. The Left Democratic Front government formed a new investigation team under ADGP B Sandhya and in June 2016, Ameerul was detained at Kancheepuram in Tamil Nadu. The police submitted the chargesheet in September 2016. The trial commenced in April this year.


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