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Madhu Lynching: Kerala High Court stays sentence and grants bail to prime accused but denies bail to 12 others

Madhu, a mentally challenged tribal youth, was tied up and brutally beaten to death in Palakkad’s Attapady in February 2018. The accused along with others allegedly caught Madhu from a nearby forest and assaulted him after accusing him of stealing rice from a grocery shop.

Sixteen persons stood trial for committing offences punishable under Sections 143, 147, 294(b), 323, 324, 326, 342, 352, 364, 367, 368, 302 read with Section 149 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Sections 3(1)(d), 3(1)(r), 3(2)(v), and 3(2)(va) of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act (SC/ST Act).

In April this year, Hussain and twelve others were convicted by a special court hearing SC/ST Act cases for committing several offenses including under Sections 304 (causing death by negligence) and 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means) of the IPC.

They were sentenced to undergo various periods of imprisonment under each offense, with the longest being 7 years imprisonment under Sections 304 and 326.

Since the sentences were to run concurrently, they would have had to undergo 7 years of rigorous imprisonment in total as well as pay the fines as ordered by the trial court.

One of the accused was found guilty under Section 352 (punishment for assault or criminal force) of the IPC alone and, therefore, sentenced to 3 months simple imprisonment.

The remaining three accused persons were acquitted by the special court.

Source: Barandbench

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