The Supreme Court on Monday denied parole for Vikas Yadav who is one of the accused in the 2002 Nitish Katara murder case. “You have been sentenced for 25 years of imprisonment, complete it,” the court said, while dismissing the plea of Yadav for grant of four-week parole.
Vikas Yadav, the son of Uttar Pradesh politician DP Yadav, is serving the jail sentence for the murder of Nitish Katara, a 25-year-old business executive who was dating his sister Bharti Yadav. Vikas Yadav had kidnapped Katara from a marriage party on the intervening night of February 16-17, 2002 before killing him and burning his body. His cousin Vishal Yadav was also convicted while another co-convict, Sukhdev Pehalwan, was given a 20-year jail term in the murder case. Their jail term ends in 2027.
Vikas Yadav had sought four weeks’ parole. His lawyer argued in court that he had been in jail for 17 and a half years and he had a “fundamental right” to be granted parole. “You have been convicted. Where is the fundamental right,” the Supreme Court countered.
Neelam Katara, Nitish Katara’s mother fought a long legal battle for justice. The Delhi High Court in 2015 sentenced Vikas and Vishal Yadav to 30 years in jail, calling it an “honour killing” planned with “extreme vengeance.” The court did not sentence the two to death, as Neelam Katara had petitioned, saying the possibility of their reformation and rehabilitation was not “unforseeably foreclosed.”