Pune, November 29: More than 16 months after the brutal rape-murder of a minor girl in the remote village of Kopardi in Ahmednagar sent shockwaves across Maharashtra, a special court on Wednesday pronounced the death sentence to the three accused.
The tension was palpable in the courtroom as the three accused – Jitendra Shinde (25), Santosh Bhaval (36) and Nitin Bhailume (26) were produced. All three stood with impassive faces as Additional Special Judge Suvarna Kevale awarded the death sentence to each of them.
On July 13, 2016, a 15-year-old girl was returning home after meeting her grandfather when the main accused Jitendra Shinde accosted her. Shinde brutally tortured and raped girl. He called his friends who dragged her to an isolated location and murdered her.
The case caused an uproar in the Maharashtra assembly during the monsoon session, with the Opposition demanding action from the government. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis made a statement saying the a fast-track court will hear the case. The state government also announced Rs 5 lakh financial help to the victim’s family.
Edited by Madhumitha V with inputs from Agencies