PATNA: When a school boy overtook his SUV at night in May last year, Rocky Yadav was so enraged that he shot the young driver dead, a court in Bihar has ruled.
Rocky Yadav, whose parents are seen as influential, will be sentenced on September 6. His mother, Manorama Devi, was a politician with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s party at the time of the shooting but was suspended soon after; her husband, Bindi Yadav, is a powerful businessman who was convicted on Thursday of destruction of evidence to shield their son.
“It has been a grueling 16 months, waiting for justice,” said the victim’s mother, Chand Sachdeva.
Rocky Yadav (real name Rakesh Ranjan), who was driving a Range Rover accompanied by a bodyguard, has denied any wrongdoing though the police originally claimed he had confessed to the killing.
Aditya Sachdeva, 19, was driving home with four friends after a night out to celebrate the end of their Class 12 exams when he was killed. He died immediately. Through the trial, his family has alleged that his mother’s political reach could influence the outcome.
Their fears were not unfounded. The four friends who were driving with Aditya Sachdeva in his father’s Maruti Swift turned hostile in court after originally indicting Rocky Yadav in statements to the police, claiming that he first beat up Aditya Sachdeva. Rocky Yadav’s bodyguard, Rajesh Kumar, who was also convicted on Thursday of murder, said he asked: “Don’t you know who I am?” before shooting at Aditya Sachdeva. But the bodyguard later retracted that statement.
The case against the 22-year-old rested heavily on the pistol recovered from the location of the crime that was allegedly worth 10 lakhs and was licensed to him.
For two days after the shooting, Rocky Yadav went missing; his mother said she did not know where he was; he was later found hiding in a factory owned by his father. He was briefly granted bail but after the Patna government opposed this in the Supreme Court, claiming it would allow him to influence witnesses, he was returned to prison.