The Supreme Court today directed that an accused facing trial in the sensational murder case of TV journalist Soumya Viswanathan should not be released from jail till Friday following the Delhi High Court's order granting him bail.
A bench of Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan passed the order after the Delhi Police said the accused, Ravi Kapoor, who was also convicted in the 2009 business executive Jigisha Ghosh murder case, has been granted bail and parole by the high court in three separate cases lodged against him.
Kapoor was awarded death sentence by a trial court here in connection with the Jigisha Ghosh murder case but the capital punishment was later commuted to life term by the high court earlier this year. The trial in the 2008 Soumya Viswanathan murder case is pending before a trial court here.
Soumya was shot dead on September 30, 2008 while she was returning home in her car from office in the wee hours. The police had earlier claimed robbery as the motive behind the killing of both Jigisha and Soumya.
The order that Kapoor should not be released till July 13 came on appeals filed by the Delhi Police challenging the grant of bail to him in two cases and 15-day parole granted by the high court in the third case lodged against him.
The matter was mentioned in the morning by the advocate appearing for the police before a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, who said it would be heard today itself. Later, the matter was listed for hearing before the bench headed by Justice Sikri.
The lawyer told the bench that Kapoor has been granted bail and parole by the high court in the cases lodged against him and if he was released from jail, there was possibility that he would abscond.
"List on July 13. Till then Ravi Kapoor/respondent-accused shall not be released," the bench said in its order.
On January 4, the high court had reduced to life sentence the death penalty awarded to two of the three convicts in the Jigisha Ghosh murder case, saying the crime did not qualify as "rarest of rare" warranting capital punishment.
A division bench of the high court, while modifying the death penalty awarded to Ravi Kapoor and Amit Shukla, had also confirmed the life sentence to the third convict, Baljeet Malik, in the murder case.
28-year-old Jigisha Ghosh, an operations manager in a management consultancy firm, was abducted and killed on March 18, 2009 after she was dropped by her office cab around 4 am near her home in Vasant Vihar area of South Delhi. Her body was recovered three days later from a place near Surajkund in Haryana.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)