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Life term for killing RTI activist

Ranchi, March 21: A CBI special judge today awarded life term to two persons in the 2008 Lalit Mehta murder case.

The MGNREGS activist and RTI crusader was beaten to death at Fatlahi forest, 25km from the Palamau district headquarters, on May 14 that year and and his body hidden under dry leaves.

The court held Bihari Singh and Kanta Singh guilty under Sections 396 (dacoity with murder) and 201 (hiding evidence) of the IPC.

There were three other accused in the case — Raju Singh, Dilip Singh and Mohan Singh. While Maoists killed Raju on January 5, 2009, the court acquitted Dilip and Mohan three days ago, giving them benefit of doubt.

Defence lawyer Jitendra Kumar confirmed the sentencing, saying a fine of Rs 5,000 had also been imposed on each of the two convicts.

“If they cannot pay, they will serve an extra 15 days in jail,” the counsel said.

He added that he would challenge the order in Jharkhand High Court.