Belying the idiom “Dead men tell no tales,” the DNA report generated from hair found in the fist of a murdered child and the blood stains on clothes of two accused persons has sent them behind bars for life. The child’s neck and wrist had been found slit.

Circumstantial evidence and witnesses deposing about the conduct of the convicts on one side, it was the forensic evidence generated from the DNA from the hair of the accused, the blood on the convicts’ clothes and that found on the blade (the weapon of crime) that did them in.

“It is said that ‘dead men do not tell a tale’ but forensics has changed it all and proved that even dead can indeed tell a tale, as has happened in the present case,” Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau said in her order.

The court sentenced two labourers, Mohammad Jaffar, 32, and Mohammad Tanvir, 22 – both natives of Samastipur in Bihar – to rigorous imprisonment for life for murdering four-year-old Mohamma Afridi on October 30, 2011. The convicts slashed his neck and wrist with a shaving blade only because they wanted to teach a lesson to his father, Mohammad Chand, with whom they had a quarrel over putting of cable wire from in front of their room a week prior to the incident.

The court also slapped a fine of Rs.1 lakh on each of them to be paid to the victim’s family, if realised.

The convicts and the father of the deceased used to stay in the same building as tenants. The convicts took the child away while his mother was out to buy groceries. While the parents of the victim kept looking for their missing child, his body was recovered by the police a few hours later from MCD park, Rampura.

The police found hair in the victim’s fist, the DNA from which matched with that of Mohammad Tanvir, who was one of the suspects last seen with the child.

“The DNA report regarding hair recovered from the hand of the deceased child which he was clutching when his body was recovered matches with the accused Mohd. Tanvir and conclusively establishes and confirms that it was Mohd. Tanvir who was holding the child at the time when the incident took place; the child was struggling to free himself from his clutches and even pulled his hair,” the court noted.