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RI for life in triple murder

GUILTY: Pralay Das at the district court in Jamshedpur on Wednesday. (Bhola Prasad)

Jamshedpur: An East Singhbhum district court on Wednesday sentenced a 34-year-old man to rigorous imprisonment for life in a 2012 case of triple murder at Tube Colony in Baridih.

The court of the additional district judge XIII had on Tuesday held Pralay Das guilty of pre-planned murder of his physically challenged father-in-law and former Tata Steel employee Ratan Chatterjee (60), mother-in-law Shyamali (52) and teenaged sister-in-law Piyali (17) at their residence on November 28 that year.

The court also slapped a penalty of Rs 20,000 on prime accused Pralay, who had hatched the plot for money and allegedly convinced his three friends - Tinku Yadav, Amar Yadav and Rahul Munda, all residents of Birsanagar -to help. The trio were, however, acquitted for lack of evidence.

Additional public prosecutor Shyam Kumar Mahto said the members of the family were found with their throat slit. A total of 10 witnesses recorded their statements, including Chatterjee's eldest daughter and Pralay's wife Sonali (26) who is a florist by profession. Sonali identified her husband as the mastermind in court.

The prosecution proved that Pralay had committed the crime after consuming liquor with his friends. He gained access to his in-laws' residence through the backdoor around 2am and later returned to his Birsanagar residence. He confessed to his crime in front of his wife around 3.30am.

Pralay had had a love marriage with Sonali, but their relationship was under strain. He wanted to patch up so that he could coax his father-in-law for money to buy a second-hand car. He also wanted Chatterjee to get him a job with Tata Steel. But, the elderly man spurned his requests. That had angered Pralay.

The accused was arrested by Sidhgora police in December 2012 and the murder weapon was found on him. He was charged with triple murder and forwarded to Ghaghidih Central Jail.

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