In relief to gangster-turned-MLC Brijesh Singh, HC dismisses pleas challenging his acquittal in Sikraura murder case

 The Allahabad High Court on Monday dismissed criminal appeals against the acquittal of gangster-turned-legislator Brijesh Singh in the killing of seven people in Sikraura village in Uttar Pradesh’s Chandauli district 37 years ago.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Pritinker Diwaker and Justice Ajay Bhanot dismissed the appeals after hearing the counsels for the parties.

“After considering all the evidence as adduced by the prosecution, the court below has reached the conclusion of acquitting the accused respondent. The view taken by the trial court is one of the possible and plausible views and it cannot be said to be perverse,” the bench said.

On April 9, 1986, seven members of a family were killed while two women suffered injuries in Sikraura village under Balua police station, now in Chandauli district.

On August 17, 2018, the additional district judge of Varanasi had acquitted Brijesh Singh, a member of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council, in the case.

Hirawati, a witness in the case, filed a criminal appeal against the judgment.

Another appeal challenging the lower court verdict was filed by state government.

In its order, the high court said, “In the FIR, there is no mention by complainant Hirawati that she saw the accused respondent killing her sons…in the subsequent trial, she states that she saw the respondent-accused Brijesh Singh killing her sons. False implication of the present accused cannot be ruled out.”

“While considering the scope of interference in an appeal or revision against acquittal, it has been held by the Supreme Court that if two views of the evidence are reasonably possible, one supporting the acquittal and other indicating conviction, the high court should not, in such a situation, reverse the order of acquittal recorded by the trial court,” the bench noted.

The charge sheet in the case was filed against 14 persons — Pancham Singh, Vakil Singh, Devendra Pratap Singh, Rakesh Singh, Brijesh Kumar Singh alias Veeru Singh, Kanhaiya Singh, Bans Narain Singh, Ram Das Singh alias Dina Singh, Musafir Singh, Vinod Kumar Pandey, Mahendra Pratap Singh, Narendra Singh, Loknath Singh and Vijai Singh.

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