Today, the Supreme Court upheld the death sentence of the convicts in the Nirbhaya rape case saying that there was no error in judgement.
The three of the four convicts in the December 2012 Delhi gangrape and murder case had filed a review petition after the court had upheld the death sentences on May 5, 2017. The court had also, in its 2017 verdict, upheld the capital punishment that was awarded to the convicts by a trial court and then confirmed by the Delhi High Court.
On December 16, 2012, a 23-year-old paramedic student and her boyfriend had stepped out to watch a movie in Saket and had taken a private bus home when the student was gangraped by six men and the boyfriend brutally beaten up. On December 29, the student passed away because of multiple organ failure and left the nation shocked and enraged at the brutality of the crime.
Out of the six men, one was a juvenile and another accused, Ram Singh committed suicide in Delhi's Tihar jail. Of the remaining four, three convicts - Mukesh, Pawan Gupta and Vinay Sharma filed the petition while the fourth convict Akshay Kumar Singh chose not to.
The bench, comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and other justices like R Banumathi and Ashok Bhushan, said in its judgement, "Review applications cannot be entertained.. convict cannot be allowed to re-agitate the grounds of appeal. There has to be an apparent error on record to show it resulted in miscarriage of justice." The court also added, "The death row convicts failed to point out 'error' in the judgement. Convicts were heard elaborately during appeals and no grounds have been made out for review of its verdict."
As a citizen of the country that has been recently termed as the most dangerous country for women, the judgement comes as a welcome news for me. Considering the brutality of the rape, nothing less than the death sentence should have been awarded to people who were capable of and committed a crime so heinous, it shook the nation right down to its very core.
According to Crime In India 2012 Statistics, rape is the fourth most common crime against women in the country. Keeping in mind how the rape cases have increased over the years, it is all too possible that the crime has moved up the ladder. With a nation like Pakistan also fast-tracking the case of a six-year-old and awarding death penalty to the accused within four days, we're still behind them by about six years.
Maybe this case will set an example for people looking to get away with this crime. Maybe it won't hinder their cruel intentions. But one thing is for sure, this time, justice has been served, albeit a little late!
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