A State transport driver, who hijacked a bus and went on a rampage killing nine people and injuring many others here on January 25, 2012, was sentenced to death by a sessions court on Monday.
The court called the crime committed by 35-year-old Santosh Mane as rarest of rare, and deemed fit for the extreme punishment.
The failure of the defence to prove that Mane was mentally ill while committing the crime resulted in the harsh punishment.
V.K. Shevale, Additional Sessions Judge, stated, “The accused has committed the murder of nine persons by moving the bus dangerously with the intention and knowledge that the act was so imminently dangerous that it will cause death or bodily harm.”
The judge stated that public prosecutor Ujjwala Pawar had been successful in proving that Mane had been aware of the immoral nature of his actions.
During the 45-minute rampage, Mane drove around 15 kilometres in the city, before he was restricted by the police and commuters.
Mane has been charged under Sections 302, 307, for attempt to murder and murder, 324 for voluntarily causing hurt, 427 for causing damage to property and 381 for theft of public property.
Before announcing the sentence, defence lawyer Dhananjay Mane pleaded for minimum punishment for Mane as he was his family’s sole breadwinner, and later stated that he would challenge the decision in the Bombay High Court.
It is rarest of case, says court