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Manjunath trial: Two witnesses turn hostile

Posted by ekavi on July 7, 2006

Manjunath trial: Two witnesses turn hostile
 
Express News Service

http://cities.expressindia.com/fullstory.php?newsid=191653
 
Lakhimpur Kheri, July 6: Two prosecution witnesses in the S Manjunath murder trial turned hostile today, retracting the statements that they had earlier made before the police.

One of them, Rajendra Singh, denied that he had heard gun shots on the night of November 19 last year, when Manjunath was shot dead. Rajendra’s house is next to the petrol pump were Manjunath was allegedly killed. He was cross-examined by the District Government Counsel, Chandra Mohan Singh.

The other witness who turned hostile today was Balwinder. However, prosecution lawyers claimed that they had successfully extracted the evidence from both the witnesses.The third prosecution witness who was produced today was R P Pandey, an employee of a hotel in Gola Gokarn, Alankar Hotel. He told the court that Manjunath had stayed in the hotel on the night of November 18. He said the victim had checked out of the hotel the next day, at about 10:30 am. He handed over hotel records to support his statement.

‘‘Pandey’s statement is an important evidence to prove Manjunath’s presence at Gola Gokarn on the day of his murder,’’ said I B Singh, one of the lawyers on the prosecution team.

S Manjunath, a sales executive with Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), was shot dead in Lakhimpur Kheri on November 19 last year. He had reportedly threatened to seal a petrol pump, Mittal Automobiles, at Gola Gokarn in Lakhimpur Kheri, for selling adulterated fuel.

The main accused is Monu Mittal, the son of the petrol pump owner. Police had earlier recovered empty cartridges from the petrol pump area. The others accused in the case are Harish, Rakesh Kumar, Vivek Sharma, Lalla Giri, Rajesh Verma, Devesh Agnihotri and Sanjay Awasthi.

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