Shivani Bhatnagar murder case verdict likely Tuesday

March 17th, 2008 - 9:23 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 17 (IANS) A court here is likely to pronounce Tuesday the verdict in the nine-year-old case of murder of journalist Shivani Bhatnagar. Indian Police Service (IPS) officer R.K. Sharma and five others are prime accused in the case. Additional Sessions Judge Rajendra Kumar Shastri reserved the judgement for March 18 after the prosecution concluded its final arguments in the case.

Besides Sharma, Pradeep Sharma, Satya Prakash, Ved Prakash Sharma, Ved alias Kalu and Sri Bhagwan are facing the trial in the case.

Shivani was found murdered in her East Delhi apartment Jan 23, 1999. Since the murder, Sharma was on run and surrendered to a court in Ambala, Haryana, Sep 27, 2002.

Sharma later confessed to the police that he came in contact with Shivani when he was posted as Officer on Special duty (OSD) to the then Prime Minister I.K. Gujral.

The investigations further revealed that when the murder took place Shivani was on maternity leave.

Earlier, Shivani had gone to London for three months and Sharma had made 90 international calls to her from Mumbai.

But Sharma accused former union minister Pramod Mahajan of having a ‘love affair’ with the reporter and getting her murdered.

Sharma termed Mahajan’s affair with Shivani as “common knowledge”: “Everyone knew, except the Delhi Police”.

All the accused have been charged under Section 302 (murder), 120 B (conspiracy), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence), 403 and 404 (dishonest misappropriation of property).

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