Nirbhaya gangrape case: The Supreme Court of India today upheld the death penalty that was slapped on the four convicts in the December 16 Nirbhaya gang rape case. The convicts Akshay (31), Pawan (22), Vinay (23) and Mukesh (29) will now be hanged till death – the exact time of carrying out the execution will be provided later. One of the accused, Ram Singh had hanged himself in prison. Union Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi in an interview with the media said that SC’s verdict in the case will act as a “deterrent” against such heinous crimes. She said, “It has been five years, but in this country getting justice takes decades. So justice definitely has been done. I am happy. The whole country is happy,” according to a PTI report. She further added, “I am happy that the verdict has been upheld though I wish it had come sooner,” as quoted by ANI.
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Another accused, who was a juvenile at the time of the crime, was convicted and served the maximum sentence of three years in a correctional home. While talking about the juvenile, Gandhi said, “the law did not permit enhanced punishment in his case.” A judgement like this was necessary to send a stern message to people who commit such heinous crimes, the minister said.
Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi in an interview with India Today said, “We have been living here for 20 years now. May 10 is Nirbhaya’s birthday. If she would have been alive today, it would have been her 28th birthday.” After the declaration of the result, she said, “justice has finally been done.” She further added, “Many any ups & downs came, I made them my strength. I was confident that justice will be done.”
Nirbhaya succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 2012.