Life term for wife murderer
Mohali-based property dealer Baljinder Singh, alias Talla was handed out life imprisonment for the cold-blooded murder of his wife, Anuradha Sandhu, here on Wednesday. The 34-year-old designer was killed on May 17, 2008, in her Sector-38 (West) residence.
The UT district court also sentenced Talla's servants, Vijay Pal, alias Nikku and Ashok Kumar Shoki, who had executed the gory crime, to life term.
While pronouncing the sentence, additional district and sessions judge GC Garg said, "The motive behind the occurrence was there as the accused, Baljinder Singh, wanted to get rid of his wife Anuradha to marry Noor Kataria. Sometimes, motive plays an important role and becomes a compelling force to commit a crime."
The conviction comes despite the key witnesses, including deceased's brother, sister and daughter, turning hostile. The court observed, "A motive is something which prompts a person to form an opinion or intention to carry out an illegal act, or even a legal act but with illegal means, with a view to achieve that motive."
A boutique owner, Anuradha, was slaughtered on the intervening night of May 17-18, 2008. The bedroom, where the body was found, presented a bloody picture and the victim's neck was severed. At that time, her minor children where asleep in the adjacent bedroom and Talla was reportedly away to a late night party.
The case got its first twist when a disfigured body, supposed to be that of Nikku ' who was initially the prime suspect ' was found at Ropar. However, investigations revealed that the body was of his friend Sunil. A manhunt later, Nikku was nabbed from Nalagarh in Himachal Pradesh.
Later, Vijay's confessional statement before police led to Talla's arrest for masterminding the crime. The prosecution claimed that Talla's extramarital affair with a city-based model, Noor Kataria, as the main reason for the murder.
While holding Baljinder Singh alias Talla guilty under section 302 (murder) read with section 120B (criminal conspiracy) of Indian Penal Code, the court termed the Anuradha murder case as a deep-rooted conspiracy by Baljinder Singh and his servants Vijay Pal alias Nikku, and Ashok Kumar. In its 118-page judgment, the court also stated that the key witnesses were declared hostile on certain points but they had stuck to the prosecution version on others. The court also relied on the statement by Saru Mahajan, a witness and Noor's friend, who stated that Noor had told her that Baljinder Singh was her boyfriend and they would get married and settle in the United States.