Trial court barred from deciding Kachru case accused’s bail (Lead)

July 24th, 2010 - 8:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, July 24 (IANS) The Himachal Pradesh High Court Saturday restrained the trial court from passing any order related to bail given to four students of a medical college who ragged their junior Aman Kachru to death last year.
The court adjourned the proceedings till Monday after hearing the government and the four accused students on a matter related to cancellation of their bail.

Taking suo motu cognizance of media reports regarding the bail granted to the accused by a fast-track court of Dharamsala in Kangra district July 17, Justice D.D. Sud Thursday asked the government and the accused: “Why should the bail granted to the accused not be cancelled?”

During the hearing Saturday, counsel for the accused Shravan Dogra argued that the accused got the notice Saturday and the time was too short to file the reply. He sought adjournment in the case.

He also argued that it was more of a media trial and the fast-track court had granted them bail after examining all the witnesses and material evidence.

Responding to the assertions, Justice Sud verbally observed in the open court that “it’s not good that you are casting your aspersions on the fairness of the trial.”

After hearing both the parties, the bench restrained the trial court from passing any order till the case is pending before it.

The four accused - Ajay Verma, Naveen Verma, Abhinav Verma and Mukul Sharma - were granted bail by the fast-track court July 17, after 16 months of custody.

The state government moved the fast-track court judge Purinder Vaidya July 19 for setting aside the bail granted to the students, who were charged with murder.

Vaidya refused to entertain the government’s plea Friday, saying the matter had already been taken up by the high court. He listed the matter for next hearing Aug 2.

Aman Kachru, 19, a first year medical student, died March 8, 2009, a few hours after being allegedly ragged by four final-year students of the Rajendra Prasad Medical College at Tanda town in Kangra district. The four students were subsequently arrested.

The magisterial inquiry conducted by the state government into the death of Kachru has concluded that the student died due to ragging.

The inquiry report said many first-year students, including Kachru, were subjected to intense physical ragging March 7, 2009.

“Kachru collapsed and died due to injuries which the post-mortem report has linked to the incident of ragging,” said the report, holding college principal Suresh Sankhyan, responsible for the lapses.

Sankhyan resigned from the post after the incident.

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