North Goa Additional Sessions Judge Edgar Fernandes has acquitted all the three accused in the alleged 2017 murder case at Campal Parade Ground in Panaji. Three Panaji youths Manjunath Koli, Rajkumar Jaigadi and Aniket Naik were booked and charge sheeted under Sections 302, 307, 201 read with 34 of Indian Penal Code for having allegedly assaulted Manoj Yadav a native of UP with kicks and blows as a result of which he succumbed to death.
Adv Aires Rodrigues, who defended the accused submitted that there is absolutely no evidence, either direct or circumstantial, against any of the accused and as such, the accused are required to be acquitted.
The police said that on 04.09.2017, at about 04.30 hrs., at Campal Parade ground, near Sulabh toilet, the accused, with their common object, assaulted the deceased Manoj Yadav alias Aman with kicks and blows, resulting in his death and also assaulted the complainant Akash Das with a knife in an attempt to kill him and thereafter disposed of the weapon, used during commission of offence.
The case was investigated by then Panaji Police Inspector Siddhant Shirodkar assisted by Police Sub-Inspectors Arun Desai and Rajaram Bagkar.
During the trial the Prosecution examined 16 witnesses. The accused were represented by Adv. Aires Rodrigues while Public Prosecutor Roy D’Souza appeared for the State. The trial took over four and half years with 84 hearings.
However, after none of the witnesses could correctly identify the accused at the time of the commission of the offence, the court found that there was absolutely no evidence to connect the accused to the assault on the deceased. Further stating that the Prosecution had failed to prove its case, Judge Edgar Fernandes acquitted all the three accused.