SC to pass judgment on quantum of sentence of convicts in Nitish Katara murder

New Delhi,Oct3:The Supreme Court will on Monday decide the quantum of sentence to be awarded to Vikas Yadav, his cousin Vishal and their aide Sukhdev Pehalwan, who all were convicted in the sensational 2002 Nitish Katara murder case.

A bench comprising of Justices Dipak Misra and C Nagappan will pronounce the verdict on the appeals filed by Vikas and Vishal against the Delhi High Court order which had enhanced the life term to 25 years in jail without remission and an additional five years for destruction of evidence in the case by terming the murder of Katara as ‘honour killing’.

Yadav had made the appeal for leniency on September 21 and senior Supreme Court advocate UR Lalit appearing for the convict, who is the son of former parliamentarian DP Yadav, had told the division bench of the apex court headed by Justice C Nagappan, that his client has already served over 14 years of his jail sentence.
He also said that his client has been serving his jail term without parole, despite both Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court granting him custodial parole several times.

The Delhi High Court had in February rejected the plea for giving a death sentence or enhancing life imprisonment to Vikas and his cousin Vishal to 25 years in jail without any remission.

The High Court had then held the murder of Katara, who was in love with Vikas’s sister Bharati, was an ‘honour killing’, which was done in a very carefully planned manner with extreme vengeance.

The High Court had decided to enhance the sentence awarded by the trial court, saying ‘amplitude of the gravity of the offence’, ‘cries for the need’ that they (the convicts) be ‘adequately punished’.