Excerpts from the 429-page judgement by Justice Deepak Misra, Ashok Bhushan and the concurring judgement by Justice Bhanumati upholding the death sentence to the four convicts in the horrific 16 December gangrape case.
JUSTICE DIPAK MISRA & JUSTICE ASHOK BHUSHAN:
“The casual manner with which she was treated and the devilish manner in which they played with her identity and dignity is humanly inconceivable. It sounds like a story from a different world where humanity has been treated with irreverence. The appetite for sex, the hunger for violence, the position of the empowered and the attitude of perversity, to say the least, are bound to shock the collective conscience which knows not what to do. It is manifest that the wanton lust, the servility to absolutely unchained carnal desire and slavery to the loathsome bestiality of passion ruled the mindset of the appellants to commit a crime which can summon with immediacy “tsunami” of shock in the mind of the collective and destroy the civilised marrows of the milieu in entirety.
When we cautiously, consciously and anxiously weigh the aggravating circumstances and the mitigating factors, we are compelled to arrive at the singular conclusion that the aggravating circumstances outweigh the mitigating circumstances now brought on record.”
JUSTICE R. BANUMATHI:
“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.
If at all there is a case warranting award of death sentence, it is the present case. The present case clearly comes within the category of ‘rarest of rare case’ where the question of any other punishment is ‘unquestionably foreclosed.
Despite the progress made by women in education and in various fields and changes brought in ideas of women’s rights, respect for women is on the decline and crimes against women are on the increase.
Offences against women are not a women’s issue alone but, human rights issue. Increased rate of crime against women is an area of concern for the law-makers and it points out an emergent need to study in depth the root of the problem and remedy the same through a strict law and order regime. There are a number of legislations and numerous penal provisions to punish the offenders of violence against women. However, it becomes important to ensure that gender justice does not remain only on paper.”