New Delhi, Feb 12 (PTI) The AAP government Tuesday opposed in Delhi High Court a parole plea by a convict serving life term in the Jigisha Ghosh murder case, and facing trial in the sensational 2008 murder of TV journalist Soumya Viswanathan, saying there was a threat that he may misuse the relief and abscond.
Murder convict Ravi Kapoor, in custody since March 2009, has approached the high court seeking parole for three months to take proper medical treatment as he was suffering from life threatening disease HIV and for surgery of chronic sinus.
Highlighting Kapoor’s record in jail, the state government said in its report that his conduct in prison is not good and he has been given 41 punishments on various counts including misbehaviour with officials and fights.
The status report of the authorities was filed before Justice Mukta Gupta who listed the matter for further hearing in April after the convict’s counsel sought time to file reply to the report.
In the report filed through Delhi government standing counsel (criminal) Rahul Mehra along with advocate Jamal Akhtar, the government sought dismissal of the parole plea claiming that Kapoor was a “dreaded criminal”.
It said that he should not be released on parole as he was a hard core criminal and threat to society. There is an imminent danger and real threat that he may abscond by misusing the parole, the report said.
It added that besides serving life term in 2009 business executive Jigisha Ghosh’s murder case, Kapoor was also facing trial for allegedly murdering Soumya and several prosecution witnesses are yet to depose against him in the matter.
The authorities also informed the court that the high court had in June 2018, granted parole to Kapoor for filing an appeal in the Supreme Court and re-establishing social ties with family and society.
However, the parole was set aside by the apex court after the state filed an appeal against the high court order.
In his plea, the convict claimed that he was infected with Immuno Deficiency Virus (HIV) during the custody and was under treatment of a doctor in jail. Later, he was being treated at RML Hospital here but his condition was not improving.
Kapoor was convicted and awarded death sentence by a trial court in the Jigisha Ghosh case. The capital punishment was commuted to life term by the high court in 2018.
The trial in the 2008 Soumya murder case is pending before a lower court here. She was shot dead on September 30, 2008 when 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.
On January 4, 2018 the high court had reduced to life sentence the death penalty awarded to two of the three convicts in the Jigisha case, saying the crime did not qualify as “rarest of rare” warranting capital punishment.
The high court, while modifying the death penalty awarded to convicts 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.
Recovery of the weapon allegedly used in Jigisha’s murder had led to cracking of the murder case of Soumya.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.