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Aarushi Verdict: Parents Rajesh and Nupur Talwar given life imprisonment

Last updated on: November 26, 2013 18:13 IST

Dentist couple Rajesh and Nupur Talwar was on Tuesday sentenced to life term by a Central Bureau of Investigation court after they were convicted of killing their daughter Aarushi and domestic help Hemraj five-and-a-half years ago.

Rajesh, 49, and Nupur, 48, were spared the death penalty by Additional Session Judge Shyam Lal who rejected the Central Bureau of Investigation’s plea for maximum punishment after the premier probe agency submitted that the case fell in the "rarest of rare" category.

Arguing before the court on the quantum of punishment in the double murder case that had gripped the nation as one of the most puzzling crimes ever, CBI counsel R K Saini argued that the killing was a cold-blooded murder and fell in the "rarest of rare" category.

Defence counsel Tanvir Mir countered CBI's argument, saying the evidence against his clients was weak and sought leniency for Talwars.

The arguments lasted just five minutes before the judge adjourned proceedings and pronounced the quantum of sentence at 4.30 pm.

The Talwar couple remained composed when the verdict was read out.

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Rajesh and Nupur Talwar given life imprisonment

The Talwar couple was also sentenced for five years for destruction of evidence and Rajesh for another one year for filing a wrong FIR with police. All the sentences pronounced by the judge, who relied heavily on the circumstantial evidence provided by the CBI, will run concurrently.

The dentist couple was on Monday convicted in the murder of their daughter Aarushi, 14, and Hemraj, 45, in a case that was awash with allegations of sleaze and sex, police-goof-ups, CBI flip-flops and media bias. The judge also made a reference to “freaks in the history of mankind who kill their own progeny”.

The couple was convicted under Indian Penal Code sections 302(murder), 201(destruction of evidence) and 34(common intention to commit the crime). Rajesh was also convicted separately for "furnishing false information to the police regarding the murder of his daughter by Hemraj”.

According to the CBI, the dentist killed Aarushi and Hemraj at their Noida home on May 15-16 night, 2008, in a fit of rage after finding them in an objectionable position.

Nupur, claimed the CBI, helped him commit the crime and then cover it up.

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Rajesh and Nupur Talwar given life imprisonment

Image: Aarushi's home at Jalvayu Vihar in Noida

Rajesh's brother Dinesh had said on Monday they would definitely appeal against the conviction in the Allahabad high court.

"The fight has just begun. It will continue," he said, adding a lot of evidence has been ignored.

According to the CBI, the Talwars killed Aarushi in a fit of rage after finding her with Hemraj, who hailed from Nepal, in an "objectionable position", suggesting the double-murder could be a case of honour killing.

Aarushi was found on her bed with her throat slit on the morning of November 1, days before the birthday of the class 9 student, at their residence in Noida, a Delhi suburb.

Police initially blamed the missing domestic servant Hemraj -- only to find his decomposing body on the roof 24 hours later with a similar cut and head wounds.

"Now is the time to say omega in this case, to perorate it is proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused or the perpetrators of the crime in question. The parents are the best protectors of their own children. That is the order of the human nature but there have been freaks in the history of mankind where the father and the mother became the killer of their own progeny.

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Rajesh and Nupur Talwar given life imprisonment

"They (Talwars) have extirpated their own daughter who hardly had seen 14 summers of her life and the servant without the compunction of terrestrial terrain in the breach of commandment 'thou shall not kill' and injunction of Holy Quran 'take not life which god has made sacred'," the judge, who is due to lay down office this month-end, said in his 204-page verdict.

Rajesh was arrested by Noida police after the then Inspector General Gurdarshan Singh alleged that the father had murdered his daughter. Later, he was released on bail after the case was handed over to the CBI.

Ironically, the CBI, which was handed over the case within a fortnight of the murders, initially gave Talwars a clean chit and pinned the blame on three domestic helps -- Krishna, Rajkumar and Vijay -- who were arrested.

But the CBI could not file a charge-sheet in the stipulated three months time, thus paving the way for their release on bail.

The then CBI director A P Singh then constituted a new team to probe the case afresh.

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Rajesh and Nupur Talwar given life imprisonment

The CBI later filed a closure report, saying though there was enough suspicion about the role of the parents in the murder, they had no direct evidence to prove it.

The CBI judge took on record the closure report and after perusing it, decided to press murder charges against the couple.

The judge's order said that Talwars have been convicted under Section 302 (murder), Section 201 (destruction of evidence) and Section 203 (providing false information).

"Dr Rajesh Talwar is also convicted under Section 203 IPC. Both the accused are sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for life under Section 302 read with Section 34 IPC with a fine of Rs 10,000 each and in default of payment of fine to undergo six months simple imprisonment," it said.

They have been given five years rigorous imprisonment with a fine of Rs 5,000 each.

"Dr Rajesh Talwar is also sentenced to one year simple imprisonment under Section 203 IPC with a fine of Rs 2,000 and in default of payment of fine to undergo simple imprisonment of one month. All the sentences shall run concurrently," the order read.

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