Chennai caste killing: Prime accused Dinesh out on bail

After granting bail to four of five men accused of killing Praveen, a Dalit man for having had an intercaste marriage, the court granted bail to the main accused Dinesh.
Chennai caste killing: Prime accused Dinesh out on bail
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The Chengalpattu District court on Wednesday, July 3, granted bail to Dinesh (24), the main accused in the Pallikaranai caste killing case. With this, all of the five accused in the case have been granted bail. 

Praveen, a 22-year-old Dalit man from the Paraiyar caste, was killed on February 24 for marrying Sharmila, who belongs to the Yadava caste (classified as Other Backward Class). Sharmila’s brother Dinesh (24) and four others— Sriram (18), Vishnu (23), Jothi Lingam (25), and Stephen Kumar (24), were accused of murdering Praveen. 

While Sriram and Jothi Lingam were first granted bail on June 16, Vishnu, Stephen Kumar were granted bail on June 26, 2024. 

On April 8, 42 days after being arrested, Dinesh and Jothi Lingam – had applied for bail. It may be noted that as per the Scheduled Caste/ Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, an accused cannot apply for bail before 60 days. Shortly after, Sriram had also applied for bail. However, the sessions court dismissed their bail applications. Dinesh repapplied in June. Hearing his third bail plea on Wednesday, the court said, “Considering the period of incarceration (131 days), the fact charge sheet has been filed and also considering the other facts and circumstances of the case, this court is inclined to grant bail to the petitioner.”

It may be noted that the district court had previously denied bail to Dinesh after noting that he is directly related to Sharmila, who died by suicide on April 22 following Praveen’s murder. The family of Praveen had alleged that Sharmila died by suicide due to the police’s alleged bias in probing the murder. Earlier, Senior advocate Bhavani B Mohan, special public prosecutor in the case, had said that Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party workers and leaders are protecting the culprits from facing police charges in Praveen’s murder. Before her death, Sharmila had told TNM that she was threatened by her father, Durai Kumar, who was the Deputy Organising Secretary of DMK’s construction wing in Sholinganallur. 

Chennai caste killing: Prime accused Dinesh out on bail
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