New Delhi: A 45-year-old man, who was facing trial for the last 25 years for attempting to kill a Delhi Police Constable, has been acquitted by a court here which gave him “benefit of doubt.”

Additional Sessions Judge V K Khanna set Mukesh Kumar, a Delhi resident who allegedly stabbed Constable Ram Niwas with the help of two others, free of the charge of attempt to murder.

“Grave is the offence, graver is the standard of proof required to prove it. This court finds that section 307 of the IPC has not been established beyond reasonable doubt against Mukesh and he is entitled to benefit of doubt. Therefore, he is acquitted of the charge,” the judge said while noting that the victim and other constables present with him had not seen Mukesh when the incident had happened.

The court, however, convicted him for the offence of obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions (section 186) and using criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty (section 353) under the IPC but released him on probation for good conduct for a period of one year.

“Sending convict behind bars now after 25 years of alleged incident would not be desirable in the interest of justice…He is ordered to be released on furnishing bonds of probation for a period of one year in the sum of Rs 20,000 with one surety in the like amount,” the judge said while releasing him on probation.

As per the Probation of Offenders Act, a person who has been released on probation for good conduct, has to furnish a bond and his conduct will be under the supervision of the court.

Proceedings against Mukesh’s accomplice Rajesh stood abated as he died during the pendency of trial in 2001, while another accomplice Ganesh was acquitted of the charge of attempt to murder in 2003 on the same ground as Mukesh.

According to the prosecution, on the night of October 8, 1989, constable Ram Niwas was on duty at a Ram Lila Ground in south Delhi to manage the crowd along with two other cops when he got into an altercation with Mukesh, Ganesh and Rajesh.

Ram Niwas, who was allegedly stabbed by a knife on his chest and left thigh by Mukesh, was rushed to AIIMS hospital, it said.

All the three boys were arrested four days after the incident.

Mukesh, who claimed that he was a student at the time of the incident, had pleaded innocence and said that he was falsely implicated in the case.

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