PatAug. 30: Patna High Court today granted bail to 20 persons convicted in the infamous Bathani Tola massacre case in which 21 people were killed in 1996.
| Patna High Court Telegraph picture
A division bench comprising Justice Mridula Mishra and Justice Dharnidhar Jha granted bail to the 20 people who have challenged the lower courtís verdict awarding them life imprisonment. The convicts will have to furnish two sureties of Rs 10,000 each for securing bail.
On May 5 this year, a local civil court at Ara had awarded 23 accused and acquitted another 30 for want of evidence in the massacre case.
The lower court awarded capital punishment to three persons while 20 others were awarded life imprisonment. The prosecution had filed a chargesheet against a total of 63 persons in the case.
Of 63, four persons died during the trial of the case, while five others were acquitted by the high court and one accused is still absconding.
Ranvir Sena, a banned outfit of private army of upper caste landlords, raided Bathani Tola village under Sahar police station area of Bhojpur district in the intervening night of July 11-12, 1996 and slaughtered 21 people, mostly women and girls.