Allahabad: The Allahabad High Court on Thursday acquitted Rajesh and Nupur Talwar in the murder of their teenage daughter Aarushi and their domestic help Hemraj in 2008, saying they could not be held guilty on the basis of the evidence on record.
The verdict ends a nine-year ordeal of the parents who were found guilty by a CBI court of murdering 14-year-old Aarushi.
A division bench of the court comprising justices B.K. Narayana and A.K. Mishra upheld the appeals by the Talwars against the Ghaziabad CBI court order sentencing them to life imprisonment on November 26, 2013.
Pronouncing the verdict in a packed court room, the bench held that as per the circumstances and the evidence on record the dentist couple could not be held guilty.
The court read out its orders to a packed court room, with at least 200-300 people in attendance.
Nupur and Rajesh are serving their sentence in Ghaziabad's Dasna jail.
A division bench of the high court comprising justices B. K. Narayana and A. K. Mishra had reserved its judgment on September 7 on the appeal filed by the dentist couple, fixing October 12 as the date for the verdict.
Fourteen-year-old Aarushi was found dead inside her room in the Talwars' Noida residence with her throat slit in May 2008. The needle of suspicion had initially moved towards 45-year-old Hemraj, who had gone missing but his body was found on the terrace two days later.
As the Uttar Pradesh Police drew flak over shoddy investigation into the case which was making national headlines, the then Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati handed over the probe to the Central Bureau of Investigation.
The case became a sensational story with it inspiring a book and even a film. Journalist Avirook Sen wrote the book 'Aarushi' and the film 'Talvar' (Sword), released internationally as Guilty and directed by Meghna Gulzar was based on the murder. The CBI had asked for death penalty when the Talwars were convicted by the CBI court four years ago.