MADURAI: Twenty-seven people were sentenced to life by a court in TN’s Sivaganga district on Friday for the murder of three Dalits in a clash at a temple festival at Kachanatham village on May 28, 2018.
Special court judge G Muthukumaran said though the crime was heinous, taking 27 more lives by hanging would be viewed as more horrible by civilised society. Spending their lives in jail would be punishment enough for the accused, many of whom were young, the judge said.
Thirty-three people were accused in the case. Four of them were juveniles, an accused died and another is absconding. Three of the 27 sentenced are women.
The judge directed the government to distribute the Rs 13.3 lakh to be realised from the accused as fines among the kin of the three killed – K Arumugam, A Shanmuganathan and V Chandrasekaran.
‘Fine amount not enough, give further relief to kin of deceased’
Observing that the fine amount would not be sufficient compensation, the judge also directed the district legal service authority to grant further relief to the families of those killed.
During the trial, the family members of the victims had demanded maximum punishment for the accused, saying they had barged into their houses and murdered the three men and injured several others.
Based on the request of the Sivaganga superintendent of police, the 27 appeared before the court through video-conference from prison so as not to precipitate a law and order situation.