New Delhi: Spurned by friends and relatives after his release following 15 years of incarceration for a murder, a man thought "the best place for him was jail" and committed another murder to earn another life term.
The ironical realisation dawned upon 60-year-old Satish Kumar of West Delhi within six months after he walked out of Tihar Jail in March 2009 after serving a life term there following his conviction for a murder.
Finding the outside world too unfriendly to live in, he stabbed a youth to death in October 2009 and walked to the nearest police station complete with the murder weapon, a dagger and the motive of the crime: "The best place for him is jail."
Over two and half years of trial later, a Delhi court has now sentenced Satish Kumar to another life term, sparing him the death penalty despite holding his crime "brutal and diabolical."
Additional Sessions Judge Vijay Kumar Dahiya spared him the death penalty hoping that he would eventually be reformed. "I do not feel that convict (Kumar) cannot be reformed or rehabilitated. The long incarceration in jail in this case would definitely mould the convict and would transform him into law abiding citizen." said the ASJ.
"Certainly death penalty is not warranted in this case," he added.
According to prosecution, released from the jail on March 28, 2009 after serving 15 years of sentence, Kumar had planned to reside with his relatives but due to his bad habits and criminal past, none of his relative was ready to keep him.
Kumar began living at a neighbourhood juice shop in West Delhi but he was not liked by others, police said adding a spurned Kumar stabbed a sleeping youth on October 29, 2009 in an inebriated state just to get back to jail.
The police told court after committing the crime he walked into the nearby Palam Vihar police station with the knife and the ironical confession : "The jail was best place for me."
The police also quoted him as telling it that right from the childhood, he had fallen in bad company and was ushered into the world of crime with a number of cases of theft and pick pocketing behind him.
And that's why his relatives did not like him, he added. The court spared Kumar the death penalty saying "normally death penalty should not be given when there exist mitigating circumstances in favour of the convict."
"In the instant case, Kumar has killed a youth who was working as a labourer in a brutal and diabolical manner but the convict, at the fag end of trial, has admitted his guilt.
This is mitigating circumstance in this case," it added. "It has brought to my notice that convict is involved in more than 20 cases and was earlier convicted for imprisonment for life and after having undergone the said sentence, released in the year 2009 and thereafter, he committed murder of the deceased," the court said.
"The convict is having track record of criminal cases but he has pleaded guilty and also admitted his guilt in his statement," it said, adding "the present case apparently does not fall in the category of rarest of rare cases."