No mercy for Nirbhaya rapists, SC’s 10 strong observations
The Supreme Court verdict upholding the death sentence for four men in the December 16 gang rape case has send a strong message to those committing crimes against women.
In its 429 page judgement, the apex court made some strong observations calling it a ‘rarest of rare’ crime that sparked nationwide outrage over violence against women in the country.
The top court described it as a crime of ‘mental perversion and extreme brutality’ where in intestines of the victim were ‘perforated in the most savage and inhuman manner’.
Given below is a list of SC’s some strong observations in the verdict:
1. The attitude, perception, the beastial proclivity, inconceivable self-obsession and individual centralism of the six made the young lady to suffer immense trauma and, in the ultimate eventuate, the life-spark that moves the bodily frame got extinguished in spite of availing of all the possible treatment that the medical world could provide.
2. The brazenness and coldness with which the acts were committed in the evening hours by picking up the deceased and the victim from a public space, reflects the threat to which the society would be posed to, in case the accused are not appropriately punished. More so, it reflects that there is no scope of reform.
3. The horrific acts reflecting the in-human extent to which the accused could go to satisfy their lust, being completely oblivious, not only to the norms of the society, but also to the norms of humanity. The diabolical manner in which crime was committed leaves one startled as to the pervert mental state of the inflictor.
4. When the crime is brutal, shocking the collective conscience of the community, sympathy in any form would be misplaced and it would shake the confidence of public in the administration of criminal justice system.
5. Imposition of appropriate punishment is the manner in which the courts respond to the society’s cry for justice against the crime. Justice demands that the courts should impose punishments befitting the crime so that it reflects public abhorrence of the crime. The circumstances stated by the accused in their affidavits are too slender to be treated as mitigating circumstances.
6. There is not even a hint of hesitation in my mind with respect to the aggravating circumstances outweighing the mitigating circumstances and I do not find any justification to convert the death sentence imposed by the courts below to ‘life imprisonment for the rest of the life’.
7. We live in a civilized society where law and order is supreme and the citizens enjoy inviolable fundamental human rights. But when the incident of gang-rape like the present one surfaces, it causes ripples in the conscience of society and serious doubts are raised as to whether we really live in a civilized society and whether both men and women feel the same sense of liberty and freedom which they should have felt in the ordinary course of a civilized society, driven by rule of law
8. I hope that this gruesome incident in the capital and death of this young woman will be an eye-opener for a mass movement “to end violence against women” and “respect for women and her dignity”
9. The battle for gender justice can be won only with strict implementation of legislative provisions, sensitization of public, taking other pro-active steps at all levels for combating violence against women and ensuring widespread attitudinal changes and comprehensive change in the existing mind set. (428)
10. Two questions are to be asked and answered:- (i) Is there something uncommon about the crimes which regard sentence of imprisonment for life inadequate; (ii) Whether there is no alternative punishment suitable except death sentence. Where a crime is committed with extreme brutality and the 422-collective conscience of the society is shocked, courts must award death penalty, irrespective of their personal opinion as regards desirability of death penalty. By not imposing a death sentence in such cases, the courts may do injustice to the society at large.