Court to pronounce order Sep 2 in BMW hit-and-run

August 26th, 2008 - 7:39 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 26 (IANS) After many twists and turns, the nine-year-old BMW hit-and-run case in which Sanjeev Nanda, son of arms dealer Suresh Nanda, is accused of mowing down six people, is likely to be decided Sep 2. The prosecution is demanding life imprisonment for Nanda.Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Kumar Tuesday reserved order for pronouncement of judgement on Sep 2 after hearing the final arguments from the prosecution and defence.

According to the prosecution, Sanjeev Nanda mowed down six people, including three policemen, with his BMW car on Jan 10, 1999, in Lodhi Colony area in south Delhi.

However, legal experts feel that the Delhi High Court ruling debarring R.K. Anand and I.U. Khan, who were the lawyers in the case, from practising for four months after finding them guilty of trying to bribe the key witness Sunil Kulkarni, could have a bearing on the lower court ruling.

The division bench had debarred Anand, the defence lawyer, and Khan, the special public prosecutor, from practising and slapped them with a fine of Rs.2,000 each after establishing the authenticity of a sting operation conducted by private news channel NDTV.

“The high court ruling will definitely have an impact on the lower court judgement. The case can take a new turn,” said a senior lawyer wishing anonymity.

During the arguments, the prosecution has alleged that Nanda was in an inebriated state at the time of the accident.

“Nanda was in an inebriated condition. His blood alcohol content level was 115 mg/dl on the afternoon of the day of incident,” public prosecutor Rajeev Mohan told the court.

In a fresh attempt to prove the guilt of Nanda, Mohan said the accused had the knowledge that his action was likely to cause death.

The defence concluded its final arguments on Aug 20.

The prosecution has charged Nanda and co-accused Manik Kapoor under harsher clauses of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) - section 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), which prescribes life imprisonment as maximum punishment.

On the contrary, the defence has maintained that it is at best a case of simple accident under IPC section 304A (causing death by negligence), which prescribes a maximum of two years’ jail term. They say the accused had no intention whatsoever to kill.

The prosecution has refuted the contention of the other co-accused — Rajeev Gupta, Bhola Nath and Shyam Singh — who had helped to clean the car after the accident that they did not cause destruction of evidence as they were not aware of the incident.

While Nanda and Kapoor are booked for culpable homicide not amounting to murder, Gupta and two others are accused of destruction of evidence.

Those killed in the accident were Mehdi Hasan, Nazir and Ghulam and three constables Rajan Kumar, Ram Raj and Perulal.

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