Lucknow: A sessions court on Friday sentenced BSP MLA Shekhar Tiwari and nine others to life imprisonment for murdering PWD engineer Manoj Kumar Gupta after he refused to pay donations for Chief Minister Mayawati’s birthday celebrations in 2008.

Special Additional District Judge Virendra Kumar also sentenced MLA's wife, Vibha Tiwari to two-and-a-half years imprisonment on charges of destroying evidences.

The court imposed a fine of Rs 68,000 each on all the 10 convicts besides slapping a fine of Rs 4500 on Vibha.

Tiwari along with his accomplices had killed Gupta in Auraiya, over 200 kms from here, after he refused to pay donations for the Chief Minister's birthday celebrations in December 2008.

An FIR was registered by the slain engineer's wife Shashi Gutpa at Dibiyapur police station in Auraiya.

Besides, MLA Tiwari, Vinay Tiwari, Rambabu alias Putti, Yogendra Dohre alias Bhatia, Manoj Awasthi, Devendra Rajput, Santosh Tiwari, Gajraj Singh, Pal Singh and former SHO Dibiyapur Hoshiyar Singh were awarded life imprisonment in the case.

The MLA and nine others were found guilty under sections 302 (murder), 364 (abduction), 342  (wrongful confinement) and section 7 Criminal Law Amendment Act while the MLA's wife Vibha was charged under section 201 (hiding evidence) and section 342 (wrongful confinement).

On the request of the lawyer, the court later granted 15 days interim bail to the MLA's wife, who would have to approach the Allahabad High Court in this period for regular bail.

(Agencies)