Lucknow: The Muzaffarnagar district court on Wednesday convicted all the seven accused of murdering two Jat youths in Kawal village which had led to the Muzaffarnagar riots six years ago.
The two youths, Sachin Singh and Gaurav Singh, were murdered allegedly after a brawl that started after their two-wheeler collided with the bike of locals.
Additional district and sessions judge Himashu Bhatnagar convicted Muzammil, Mujassim, Furkan, Nadeem, Janangir, Afzal and Iqbal for killing the duo on August 27, 2013 and rioting, said district prosecution counsel Rajiv Sharma.
The court said the quantum of punishment will be pronounced on Friday.
According to the first information report, the two youths under Jansath police station area were battered to death by five of the men.
The two other accused, Afzal and Iqbal, however, were summoned by the court later under provisions of Section 319 of the Criminal Procedure Code when the evidence of their complicity in the killings emerged during the trial.
The court convicted the seven after examining 10 prosecution witnesses and six in their defence.
Of the seven accused, five were in prison since the last five years, while two were out on bail.
The incident had allegedly taken place on August 27, 2013, after Sachin and Gaurav’s two-wheeler collided with one Shahnawaz’s bike. Another local was also present at the spot.
The brawl led to the duo’s murder. Later on, Shahnawaz was also killed.
Gaurav’s father, Ravindra Singh, had lodged a complaint with the Jansath police station. Shahnawaz’s father, Salim, had also filed a case against the deceased youths and their five family members.
A Special Investigation Team (SIT) had filed a final report in the case related to Shahnawaz’s, while a chargesheet on Sachin and Gaurav’s murder was filed by investigating officer Sampoornand Tiwari.
Post the Kawal incident, communal harmony in the region was disturbed and allegedly led to a major conflagration between the two communities in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli that had claimed more than 65 lives and displaced over 50,000 people.
As per official figures, given by prosecution counsel Sharma, over 6,000 cases were lodged following the riots and 1,480 accused were arrested for their alleged roles in the riots.
A special investigation team, which probed the cases, had filed chargesheets in 175 cases. Fifty-six of them involving 430 accused resulted in acquittal.
The state government has withdrawn some cases.
(With inputs from PTI)