Delhi gang-rape con­vict to walk free tomorrow

HC won’t stay release of con­vict, who was a ju­ve­nile 3 yrs ago

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Soibam Rocky Singh rocky.singh@hin­dus­tan­times.com

NEW DELHI: The Delhi high court on Fri­day re­fused to stay the release of the ju­ve­nile con­victed in the in­fa­mous De­cem­ber 16, 2012 gang rape and mur­der, al­low­ing him to walk free as sched­uled on De­cem­ber 20.

The con­vict was sen­tenced to three years in a spe­cial home as he was a ju­ve­nile at the time of the crime when along with five men he bru­tally raped a 23-yearold paramed­i­cal stu­dent aboard a mov­ing bus as a re­sult of which she died in a Sin­ga­pore hos­pi­tal two weeks later. The in­ci­dent trig­gered un­prece­dented pub­lic out­rage over a sex­ual crime in the coun­try and led to calls that ju­ve­niles be treated as adults for heinous of­fences.

“The max­i­mum stay that can be di­rected in the spe­cial home... is three years and as the (ju­ve­nile con­vict) would be com­plet­ing the pe­riod of three years by De­cem­ber 20, there can­not be any di­rec­tion to con­tinue his stay (there),” the high court said, amid con­cerns raised by the gov­ern­ment that his men­tal fit­ness was not con­sid­ered in the post-release plan.

The par­ents of the vic­tim, who were against free­ing the con­vict, re­acted sharply to the ver­dict, say­ing, “Jurm jeet gaya, hum haar gaye (crime has won and we have lost)”.

“De­spite three years of our ef­forts, the gov­ern­ment and the courts are re­leas­ing a crim­i­nal. We were as­sured that jus­tice would be done, but it has not been de­liv­ered. We are very dis­ap­pointed,” they said, adding their three- year bat­tle for jus­tice had been in vain.

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