NOIDA ; A Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court on Saturday awarded the death penalty to Surinder Koli for the murder of a 10-year-old in Nithari. The killings, in Noida’s Nithari, came to light in 2005-06 when body parts of several children and women who had disappeared were found in a drain near the house of Koli’s employer, Moninder Singh Pandher, in Sector 31.
This was the eleventh of 16 cases filed against Koli. Pandher was not charge-sheeted by the CBI, but had been summoned as a co-accused in the case after families of victims approached the trial court in 2007. CBI public prosecutor JP Sharma said Pandher was let off by the Ghaziabad court as no evidence was found against him.
“This is the first case when the trial court acquitted Pandher. The girl, whose father is a washerman, was lured into Pandher’s house by Koli on the pretext of giving her clothes to wash,” Sharma said
Koli’s rape attempts failed, after which he murdered her.
“Pandher was made a co-accused in the case after victims’ families approached the court. The court had summoned him as a co-accused under Section 319 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). The CBI did not file a chargesheet against Pandher as there was no evidence found,” Sharma added.
The CBI court had on Friday held Koli guilty of murder, attempted rape, abduction and destruction of evidence.
Koli, who hails from Mangurkhal in Uttarakhand, served as the domestic-help at Pandher’s house. Koli has been awarded the death penalty after trials in each of the 11 cases so far. The other cases against him are in the advanced stages of trial at the Ghaziabad court.
The court order stated that Koli, in his confessional statement before a magistrate, did not name Pandher or his involvement in the crimes.
Further, a prosecution witness, who is a business partner of Pandher’s, stated before the court that Pandher was in his office from 10am till around 5pm on the day of the incident.