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Road rage: was Mane examined by govt medical officer?

Bombay High Court

The Bombay High Court today wanted to know if bus driver Santosh Mane, awarded death penalty for killing nine persons and injuring 37 in a 2012 road rage incident
Bombay-High-Court-Mumbai-1Mumbai: The Bombay High Court today wanted to know if bus driver Santosh Mane, awarded death penalty for killing nine persons and injuring 37 in a 2012 road rage incident, was examined by a government medical officer before trial against him commenced as provided under the CrPC.

Under section 328 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), if a magistrate has reasons to believe that the accused person is of unsound mind and consequently incapable of defending himself, then the magistrate shall inquire into this and get the accused examined by civil surgeon of the district and thereupon examine this medical officer as witness.

A division bench of Justices N H Patil and Anuja Prabhudessai raised a query as to whether section 328 of CrPC was complied with when Mane was produced before the magistrate court for remand.

During the trial, Mane had sought leniency on the ground that he was suffering from mental illness and was undergoing treatment for the same.

Advocate Jagdish Mane, appearing for the convict, had earlier told the High Court that while the prosecution claims that the motive behind the convict going on a rampage was over his duty hours, the defence case was of insanity.

“There is medical evidence to show that Mane was undergoing treatment,” he said.

The bench today asked Additional Public Prosecutor Madhvi Mhatre to find out if CrPC section 328 was complied with in the case and posted the petition for hearing on April 8.

Santosh Mane (40), a state transport bus driver, was awarded death penalty by a Pune sessions court in December last year for killing nine persons and injuring 37 in a 2012 road rage incident. He approached the High Court challenging the sentence.

On January 25, 2012, Mane had hijacked an empty state transport bus from Swargate depot in Pune and sped off on the wrong side of the road catching oncoming traffic and people unawares.

Mane rode for about 25 kms during which he rammed into moving and stationary vehicles and pedestrians. He was later nabbed by the police.

PTI

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