Five years after the fatal gang rape of her daughter shook India and led to nationwide protests that forced authorities to tighten laws on sex crimes, Asha Devi wonders when the perpetrators will finally be sent to the gallows.
Devi's daughter, a 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist, boarded a bus with a male friend on December 16, 2012, in New Delhi. She was repeatedly raped by six assailants, including a juvenile, aboard the moving bus and her friend beaten with a metal bar before the duo was dumped on a road. The woman died of internal injuries nearly two weeks later in a Singapore hospital.
The culprits of 'Nirbhaya' (a name given to the Delhi gang rape victim by Indian media, meaning fearless) are still alive, the result is that such people in our society have no fear, Devi said on Saturday (December 16).
Four of the attackers were sentenced to death 2013 while the fifth hanged himself in prison during the original seven-month trial. That verdict was upheld by the Delhi High Court in 2014 and by the Supreme Court in May this year. However, three culprits have filed review petitions before the apeal court, which will be heard in January 2018.
Public outrage over the incident forced authorities to stiffen penalties against sex crime offenders and criminalise activities such as stalking. But girls in the national capital say nothing has changed and they are regularly harassed by men with cat calls and sexual comments.
Banner/Thumbnail Credits: Reuters, Shashank Chouhan