Mumbai: Bombay High Court Grants Bail To Man Accused Of Killing Wife, Daughter

Mumbai: Bombay High Court Grants Bail To Man Accused Of Killing Wife, Daughter

The court noted that except for evidence that accused Akshay Belunke was seen near the spot of the incident, there is no other evidence. Also there is no recovery at his instance.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Tuesday, May 21, 2024, 12:07 AM IST
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Bombay High Court | PTI

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court has granted bail to a man who is accused of killing his wife and daughter over suspicion that her maternal family was performing black magic and hence his family was facing several hurdles. The court noted that except for evidence that accused Akshay Belunke was seen near the spot of the incident, there is no other evidence. Also there is no recovery at his instance.

“The motive attributed to the Applicant (Belunke) is that the family of the deceased (wife) were conducting black magic against the family of the Applicant and the other co-Accused. However, even in that behalf also there is no evidence to substantiate said motive except oral statements of the witnesses. Thus, the Applicant is entitled to be enlarged on bail,” Justice Madhav Jamdar said recently.

The HC was hearing a bail plea filed by Belunke who was accused of strangling his wife Priyanka and daughter Mohini on April 23, 2023. They were found in the cattle shed of his brother Vijay. Belunke was arrested on April 29.

Initially, Priyanka’s brother Santosh Chaugule lodged a complaint against Belunke. However, he filed a supplementary statement on May 1 exonerating Belunke and named his immediate family – Vikas Belunke, Akshay Belunke and Umesh Belunke.

Belunke’a advocate Satyavrat Joshi submitted that the case is of circumstantial evidence and that he was arrested on “mere suspicion” and nothing incriminating was found against him. The only allegation is that Belunke along with other accused was seen at the spot of the incident, Joshi added.

State advocate Savita Yadav opposed the plea contending that motive for the murders was established. She pointed out statements of witnesses who saw co-accused Vikas running away from the shed. Also, Belunke and another accused were found going to a nearby village on motorcycle and they looked frightened.

The court noted that the prosecution had proposed to examine 27 witnesses and till date there is no progress in the trial and even the charge is also not framed. “Accordingly, the trial is likely to take a considerably long time,” Justice Jamdar said while directing his release on furnishing a personal bond of Rs25,000. Joshi assured the court that Belunke will not reside at his residence in Sangli, where several witnesses reside, and instead will stay in Solapur till conclusion of the trial.

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