Delhi earned ‘rape capital’ title after Dec 16, says HC

New Delhi, March 13 :

Delhi earned the title of “rape capital” after the horrific Dec 16, 2012 gang rape, the Delhi High Court said Thursday while confirming the death penalty of the four convicts.delhi-high-court

Dismissing the appeal of the four convicts – Mukesh, Akshay Thakur, Pawan Gupta and Vinay Sharma – challenging the Sep 13, 2013 trial court verdict sentencing them to death, a division bench of Justice Reva Khetrapal and Justice Pratibha Rani said the “crime was horrendous”.

The court said the horrific details of the crime committed on the victim in a moving bus on the night of Dec 16, 2012 came into public domain and evoked a reaction from the public that was unprecedented.

“From common man to people in power, (they) had only one demand… justice for the victim who succumbed to the injuries suffered at the hands of the convicts due to their barbaric act. The crime was horrendous. Delhi earned the title of ‘Rape Capital’,” the court said.

The 23-year-old physiotherapy intern was gang-raped by six men, including a juvenile, in a moving bus. The accused then threw her and her male companion out of the vehicle, stripped of clothing, to die by the roadside in the cold night.

The woman died of grave intestinal injuries Dec 29, 2012 at Singapore’s Mount Elizabeth Hospital where she was taken for specialised treatment.

Court cites Kamayani

The court, while upholding the death sentences awarded to four convicts of the Dec 16 gang rape case Thursday, depicted the status of women through lines of Hindi poet Jai Shankar Prasad in his epic “Kamayani”.

A division bench of Justice Reva Khetrapal and Justice Pratibha Rani said: “While delicate physique of a woman has made her vulnerable, her place and role in the growth of society has made her command utmost respect. These characteristics of a woman have been depicted by great Hindi poet Jai Shankar Prasad in his epic, Kamayani.”

The court mentioned the following lines in its order.

“Yeh aaj samajh to paayi hoon, Main durbalta mein nari hoon, Avyay ki sunder komalta, Lekar main sabse haari hoon. (This I understand today, I am a woman, in weakness, The delicate beauty of my limbs, because of them, I lose to all.)”

“Nari! tum kewal shraddha ho, Vishwas-rajat-nag-pal-tal mein, Piyush srot si baha karo, Jeevan ki sundar samtal mein. (Oh woman! You are honour personified, Under the silver mountain of faith, You flow like a river of ambrosia, On this beautiful earth.)”

And “Life of Pi’

The court said the movie “Life of Pi”, which the Dec 16 gang rape victim watched before the incident, where a tiger and a boy find comfort in each other, must have been etched in the victim’s mind.

Dismissing the appeals of the four convicts – Mukesh, Akshay Thakur, Pawan Gupta and Vinay Sharma – a division bench of Justice Reva Khetrapal and Justice Pratibha Rani observed that the victim was returning with her male companion after watching “Life of Pi”.

The court said that in the movie “how a young boy and a carnivore comfort each other in adversity and despite both being hungry and nothing available for their survival, did not harm each other, must be etched in her (victim) mind”.

“On the date of occurrence, the night slowly and intensely developed into real darkness for the victim as the convicts, to satisfy their lust, not only found easy prey when the victim along with her friend boarded the bus with a hope to have a comfortable journey at an affordable fare, little realising what destiny had in store for them,” the court said.

The bus with dark window panes proved to be a “haven” for the convicts to commit the gruesome act, it said.


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