Kozhikode, 1 Sept 2006
Kozhikode: Six National Development Front (NDF) activists were awarded life imprisonment in the Eethullathil Binu murder case on Friday. Binu, 22, a Communist Party of India (Marxist) worker, was hacked to death at Nadapuram five years ago.
Additional District and Sessions Court Judge A.M. Babu ruled that the first to the fifth accused, B.C. Basheer, 36; E. Usman, 31; Abdul Rafeek, 28; Rayaroth Meethal Nizar, 31; and K. Nazar, 36, respectively, and the 12th accused, K. Naufal, were guilty under sections 302 (murder); 143 (unlawful assembly); 147 (rioting); 148 (rioting with armed weapons); 149 (unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object); and 506 (i) (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.
A fine of Rs. 50,000 each were imposed on them. Of the money collected, Rs. 2.5 lakh should to be paid to the nearest relative of Binu, a jeep driver killed at the Kallachi taxi stand on June 2, 2001. The life imprisonment was awarded under Section 302. Other penalties were imposed under the rest of the sections. However, the terms will run concurrently.
The sixth to the 11th accused, V. Nizar, 36; M. Sadath, 34; V. Soopy 50; K. Mohammed Ali, 43; P. Hameed, 47; and K.S. Basheer, 45; were acquitted.
The prosecution failed to prove the charges, such as criminal conspiracy, against them.
Those sentenced were taken to the Viyyur Central Prison in Thrissur, as they said that their life would be in danger if lodged at the Kannur Central Prison.
They are from Nadapuram and Kuttiyadi in Kozhikode district and some places in Wayanad.
According to the charge sheet, they exploded bombs near the taxi stand before murdering Binu, who sustained over 20 wounds.
Heavy security measures were taken at the court complex. The judge was given protection.
Nadapuram and adjoining areas have been under police surveillance.
Several police pickets were erected and patrolling was intensified.
The Crime Branch's Criminal Investigation Department had investigated the case.
The murder followed the Theruvamparambu gang-rape case, in which Binu was the first accused. The District Additional Sessions Fast Track (First) Court acquitted the 12 accused, all CPI(M) activists, in that case in March this year. According to the prosecution, a woman and her seven-year-old daughter were gang-raped during violence at Nadapuram and nearby areas on January 15, 2001.
The United Democratic Front made it a campaign issue in the 2001 Assembly elections.