Rapist’s appeal over death sentence fails
COURT PAVES WAY FOR HANGINGS
INDIA’S supreme court has rejected the final appeal of one of four men sentenced to death over the 2012 fatal gang rape of a woman on a bus in New Delhi.
The ruling paves the way for the four to be hanged.
The gruesome case exposed the scope of sexual violence against women in India, prompting MPs to stiffen penalties in rape cases.
The victim, a 23-year-old physiotherapy student whom Indian media dubbed “Nirbhaya”, or “Fearless”, because Indian law prohibits rape victims from being identified, was heading home with a male friend from a cinema when six men lured them onto a bus.
With no-one else in sight, they beat the man with a metal bar and raped the woman. The pair were dumped naked on the roadside, and the woman died two weeks later.
The assailants were tried relatively quickly in a country where sexual assault cases often languish for years. Four defendants were sentenced to death.
Another hanged himself in prison before his trial began, though his family insists he was killed. The sixth assailant was a minor at the time of the attack and was sentenced to three years in a reform home.
One of those sentenced to death, Akshay Kumar Singh, filed his review petition earlier this month, after the other three had theirs rejected.