Hanging? Yes, says the court
Eight months later, at the conclusion of the trial of her killers, it is difficult to argue that J’s ordeal and death has made much difference in India, at least so far: the rapes and sexual assaults that are now highlighted daily by the Indian media act simply as a reminder of how widespread violence to women is in the country.
It is a long article, sometimes uncomfortable in familiar ways. But it is worth reading as we ponder the sentence.
HT reported the arguments by opposing counsels on the sentences:
Public prosecutor Dayan Krishnan strongly presented the demand for death penalty before the court. He pleaded before the court to ‘show no mercy for convicts’.
It was a premeditated crime, which fell in “the rarest of the rare category”, warranting the death sentence, he argued.
The men had used a metal rod and their hands to pull the woman’s organs from her body after raping her, the prosecution said. Her injuries were so severe that she died in hospital two weeks after the attack.
Defence counsel appearing for Pawan Gupta, one of the convicted in the December 16 gang-rape and murder case, pleaded for mercy citing his young age. Gupta, a fruit vendor, is 19 years old. … Pawan is “just 19 years old and there are chances of his reform”, the advocate said.
September 13, 2013
IBN Live reports a foregone conclusion:
All the four convicts [Mukesh Singh, Akshay Thakur, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta] in the December 16, 2012 gangrape and murder of 23-year-old physiotherapy student inside a private bus in Delhi have been sentenced to death by the Saket fast track trial court. One of the convicts, Pawan’s lawyer confirmed the order. … The death penalty has been awarded under Section 302 (murder) as the braveheart had died due to the injuries inflicted by the convicts. The judge called it a rarest of rare case and said that looking at the gravity of the incident and inhuman torture, it is death penalty to all.
Corrupt street policing has been blamed as part of the problem in discussions of this case. IE says that investigative policing did not fail, as it sometimes does:
Sub Inspector Pratibha Sharma was the first investigating officer in the case. She had headed the investigation in the case until the charge of murder was added, after the woman died at a Singapore hospital on December 29. The investigation was handed over to Inspector Anil Sharma, SHO, Vasant Vihar.
A mother of two, she said in the days following the incident, until all the accused were caught, she practically lived in the police station. “I did not go home… barely slept…,” she recalled outside the court room on Tuesday.
Inspector Anil Sharma said, “The DNA examination, the technical analysis and the scientific examination of the spot and the bus is what helped cracked the case. It was a tough task for us. All of us were determined to take the case to its logical end. So much so, that we would reach the court 10 minutes before the hearing to take care of all formalities. Special Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan would reach 20 minutes before us. He would have everything prepared the previous night.”
The sentence has to be confirmed by a higher court.
As for the safety of people who are not entitled to be looked after by black cat commandos: much remains to be done.