The Delhi High Court Tuesday commuted to life imprisonment the death sentence awarded to a man for raping and killing a three-year-old child, considering the young age of the accused and chances of his reforming.
Justice Kailash Gambhir and Justice Indermeet Kaur, commuting the death penalty awarded to Mukesh Kumar by a trial court to life imprisonment, said the act committed by him does not qualify as “pre-planned” and he has no criminal antecedents.
On June 12, 2005, 22-year-old Mukesh, who was the neighbour of the three-year-old girl, took her away on the pretext of giving her a toffee and then raped and killed her.
As per the post mortem report, the act was so “brutal” that the body was found in two parts.
The bench refusing to confirm the death sentence said: “This act may thus not qualify as pre-ordained or a pre-planned act. The accused also did not run away. Admittedly, the accused also has no criminal antecedents, he was known to the parents of the victim and was living in the same vicinity.”
“He must be given a chance to reform himself,” the bench added.
The trial court in 2010, terming the case as rarest of rare, had awarded him death penalty.
The child’s parents lodged a report with police June 12, 2005 that Mukesh had taken away their child on the pretext of giving her a toffee.
After his arrest, the accused disclosed that he had taken the girl to an empty container depot in Badarpur area near Tughlakabad railway station, where he committed the crime.
However, during the trial, Mukesh claimed innocence and said he was falsely implicated in the case.