High Court Shocks Nation with Acquittal in Nithari Serial Killings Case

Earlier In 2017, a special CBI court issued a death sentence to Pandher and his accomplice, Koli, following their conviction for the rape and murder of a 24-year-old maid in the Nithari killings case, a case that sent shockwaves throughout the country.

A file photo of Noida businessman Maninder Singh Pandher and his domestic help Surendra Koli being taken to jail. | Photo Credit: PTI

In a shocking turn of events, the Allahabad High Court has acquitted the prime suspects in the infamous Nithari serial killings case, Surender Koli and Maninder Singh Pandher, citing a lack of substantial evidence. This stunning verdict comes after a 2017 special CBI court had sentenced both men to death for the brutal rape and murder of a 24-year-old maid in a case that sent shockwaves across the nation.

The case had gripped the nation’s attention as it unfolded, with a 2017 judgment that delivered the ultimate punishment to Pandher and his servant Koli, accompanied by hefty fines of ₹25,000 and ₹35,000, respectively. It was a seemingly conclusive ending to a series of horrifying crimes that had plagued Noida.

A total of 19 cases were registered against businessman Maninder Singh Pandher and his domestic help, Surendra Koli, in 2007. However, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had to file closure reports in three of those cases due to a glaring lack of concrete evidence.

The gruesome saga first came to light when the skeletal remains of eight children were discovered in the drain behind Pandher’s Nithari residence on December 29, 2006. A subsequent search of the area led to the discovery of more skeletal remains, most of which belonged to underprivileged children and young women who had gone missing from the vicinity.

Among the 19 victims, a 24-year-old maid’s body was found buried in the backyard of Pandher’s Nithari residence in Noida, Uttar Pradesh. This marked the ninth of the 16 cases in which Koli had been convicted. Moreover, it was the third case in which both Pandher and Koli were found guilty.

The then-CBI spokesperson, Abhishek Dayal, had revealed the grim details of the case, stating, “It was alleged that Surender Koli committed the rape and murder of the victim at D-5, Sector 3, Noida in (Pandher’s house) on November 12, 2006.” The victim had supposedly gone to Pandher’s residence for work, but she mysteriously disappeared, prompting her family to file a missing person report on October 12, 2006.

As the dust settles on this shocking turn of events, questions and speculations arise, casting a chilling shadow over the Nithari serial killings case. What truly happened within the walls of Pandher’s house, and how did the court’s decision shift from a death sentence to a stunning acquittal? The nation waits with bated breath for answers that might forever shroud this case in suspense and mystery.

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