The district sessions court has awarded life term to Norman Fernandes rejecting the plea of the prosecution to award the capital punishments to the accused. Norman Fernandes was convicted by the district and sessions court in a double murder case last week and his point of the sentence was kept on hold due to non-availability of his lawyer.
According to the sources, the district and sessions court rejected the plea of the prosecution to award the capital punishment to Norman on the grounds that this case does not fall into the category of gravest cases and awarded him the life term. Norman was facing the charges of murder of his sister and her mother in law.
According to the sources, the prosecution strongly argued the matter pressing for the capital punishment on the grounds that he (Norman) had committed the gruesome act by murdering its own close relatives. Justice J B Deshpande rejected the plea of prosecution on the grounds that, the term rarest of the rare case which is the consistent determinative rule declared by the Supreme Court itself suggests that it has to be an exceptional case. The law contemplates recording of special reasons for awarding capital punishment and accepting that it is a rarest of rare case, he said. “In the circumstances, it has been found that the above case cannot be put into the category of gravest cases and more specifically of the rarest of the rare case as far as capital punishment is concerned,” the judge observed.
It may be recalled that, on September 2, 2013, the accused killed his sister Noreen Fernandes e Vaz and her mother-in-law Aurita Anes e Vaz, while attempting to murder his brother in law Edgar Vaz. The crime that played out at the Vaz residence occurred over a property dispute.
The judge pronounced the life term for Norman in three matters.
The accused was found guilty of the offense punishable under Section 307 (attempt to murder) of Indian Penal Code and was sentenced to life imprisonment and to pay a fine of 20,000.
The accused was found guilty of the offense under Section 302 (murder) IPC for committing murder of Norine Vaz, was sentenced to life imprisonment and to pay a fine of 20,000.
The accused was found guilty of an offense punishable under Section 302 of IPC for committing murder of Auritz Vaz and was sentenced to life imprisonment and to pay a fine of 20,000.
Judge Deshpande has pronounced that “All the sentences shall run concurrently.”
According to the sources, during the argument on the point of sentence, it was strongly contented by the public prosecutor, Poonam Bharne that, the accused had betrayed the trust of his sister and her family members who allowed him to come inside their house not knowing that he had a criminal intentions or that he was prepared to commit murder. She submitted that awarding life imprisonment will not be an appropriate punishment in the present matter considering the aggravating circumstances as compared to the mitigation circumstances. She submitted that the rarest of rare case and the adequate punishment for committing double murder is only by awarding capital punishment.
Counsel for the accused, A Prabhudessai strongly contended that from the circumstances of the case, it does not fall within the ambit of the rarest of rare case. He claimed that the accused committed such offenses since he was emotionally disturbed by the so-called letter which was circulated in the society admittedly having disturbing contents. The sources have also said that police had filed the charge sheet against the accused Norman who was a music teacher by profession.