NIRBHAYA .. Four convicts in Nirbhaya case executed — after India’s judicial system repeatedly made a nasty mockery of itself

IMAGE CREDIT .. TV9bharatvarsh

NEW DELHI: The four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang-rape case were hanged to death at Tihar Jail early in the morning on Friday, after over seven years of the brutal criminal act and prolonged legal battle that tested the patience of the nation and exposed the problems that plague India’s justice dispensation system. 

It was at 5.30am that the four convicts – Mukesh Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31)  were hanged –drawing curtains down on the long legal battle. The gang-rape of ‘Nirbhaya’ (her original name withheld), a Delhi student, on a moving bus at night in December 2012. She and her boyfriend had taken a lift in an empty luxury bus, whose conductors had solicited passengers at a bus-stop, and this led to the gang-rape.

Asha Devi, mother of Nirbhaya, responded to the TV news of the hanging on Friday by saying justice has been done, finally. 

Shortly after the execution, the hangman Pawan Jallad departed for Meerut amid the tight security cordon laid for his safety. This was the first time that four convicts were executed simultaneously in Tihar’s history.

Several attempts were repeatedly put up by lawyers representing the convicts to thwart the execution in concerted and objectionble efforts in the recent weeks, making the judiciary itself a laughing stock. Judges sat pretty and heard funny arguments, again and again, on one or other flimsy grounds, and wasted precious time of the judiciary. It showed how seriously is the Indian judicial system ailing today, due to lack of timely reforms – something in which successive governments or politicians coming to power for no more than five years are least interested in. 

The result is even those from within the judicial system are cocking a snook at the system, and so very openly and shamelessly. Judges, if was often found, was game with all such flippancy, demonstrating their lack of seriousness in discharging their responsibilities. At one time, during the trapeze act by convicts’ lawyers, the Delhi high court noted, “Someone is playing with the system, there appears to be some conspiray as there was a two-and-a-half years’ delay in filing the mercy plea.”

Notably, how the Indian systems are going to dogs is evident also from the fact that Parliament had put in place new laws to speed up justice delivery in rape cases, after the Nirbhaya gang-rape case strained the conscience of the nation in 2012; and, yet, this case itself took over seven years for justice to be meted out. Justice delayed is justice denied. So, what purpose courts in India serve, is itself a big question. –IHN-NN


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