Indian released from prison after Lulu tycoon Yusuff Ali pays Dh500,000 blood money

Becks Krishnan, from Kerala, was jailed for running over a schoolboy in the UAE in 2012

Powered by automated translation

An Indian man sentenced to death has been released from an Abu Dhabi prison thanks to Lulu tycoon Yusuff Ali.

Becks Krishnan, 45, was jailed in 2012 after he drove into a group of schoolboys, killing one.

Now he has been given a second chance after Mr Ali stepped in to pay Dh500,000 ($136,150) blood money to the victim's family.

People think I did this because of the helicopter crash but it's definitely not to do with that. I did this to help another human being

Krishnan was freed on June 2 and on Wednesday was reunited with his wife Veena and son Adwaith in Kochi, Kerala.

“It’s a rebirth for me," Krishnan said. "I had lost all hope of seeing the outside world – let alone a free life."

CCTV footage and witness accounts showed that Krishnan, a driver with a private company in the capital, drove into a group of boys, killing a Sudanese child in September 2012.

Krishnan was sentenced to death for reckless driving. Very few prisoners receive the death penalty in the UAE. His family failed to reach a settlement with the victim's family, who later moved back to Sudan. Krishnan's relatives then appealed to Mr Ali.

In a Malayalam-language video, Mr Ali said he arranged for the victim's family to fly to Abu Dhabi before Ramadan this year to discuss the case.

The victim's family pardoned Krishnan, prompting his release. Mr Ali wished him a peaceful life.

In the video, Mr Ali also mentions the April helicopter crash in his home town in southern India in April, after which the businessman, 65, underwent spinal surgery in Abu Dhabi.

“People think I did this because of the helicopter crash but it’s definitely not to do with the crash,” Mr Ali said.

“I put the Dh500,000 towards this last January. I did this to help another human being who got into an unfortunate situation. It was a case of humanity. I felt it was my duty to help.”

Under UAE law, families of people killed in road accidents are entitled to up to Dh200,000 in blood money. In some cases the figure can be higher depending on certain factors. Once the money is deposited with the court, if the family accepts the amount and pardons the prisoner, legal proceedings are then completed to secure a release.

Lulu helicopter crash – in pictures