Two minor's testimonies have ensured that their 46-year-old father will continue to be behind bars till his life ends. This was decided as the high court recently rejected the appeal made by the man challenging the conviction holding him guilty for murdering his wife, in 2009.
A division bench of Justices V K Tahilramani and A S Gadkari upheld the conviction of Pandhari Sukhdeo Mothe. In its eight page judgment, the court said "The evidence tendered by the two children inspires confidence in the court to show that Pramila Mothe was killed by her husband."
As per the testimonies, the children had seen their father assaulting the mother at home and later, throwing her into a nearby well, on December 16, 2009, at village Chikhale in Palghar. Both children told the court that their father was a habitual drunkard and used to beat their mother often.
Apart from the testimonies, the court also took into account the medical evidence given by the doctor in the post-mortem report of the mother, citing the cause of death to be due to asphyxia after drowning.
As per the prosecution case four years prior to the incident, the appellant had caused injuries to his wife and mother-in-law. On account of this, he was prosecuted. Ultimately, the case was compounded. About 15 days prior to the incident, Pandhari again assaulted Pramila and out of fear, she came to her brother's house and took shelter along with the children. However, she was sent back by her brother.
After the murder, the accused allegedly dropped the children at his in-laws house and told his mother-in-law that he was fleeing and she should look after the children. During the trial, the accused denied the charges and pleaded not guilty.
After going through the evidence as well as the arguments made by the defence advocate and the prosecution, the high court held "Looking at the evidence on record, we find no difficulty in coming to the conclusion that it was the appellant who assaulted his wife and threw her in the well, causing her death. Thus we find no merit in the appeal."