Posted by : Shoumik Das Friday, September 13, 2013

The gangrape accused
New Delhi : An Indian court has sentenced four men to death for the gang rape and murder of a student in the capital Delhi, a case which led to protests across India and new laws against rape.
Mukesh Singh, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur and Pawan Gupta were found guilty on all counts earlier this week.
Judge Yogesh Khanna said the case fell in the "rarest of rare category", rejecting pleas for lighter sentence.
The woman, 23, was attacked on a bus in December and died two weeks later.
On Friday, Judge Khanna said the attack "shocked the collective conscience" of India, and that "courts cannot turn a blind eye" to such crimes.
"This case definitely falls in the rarest of rare categories and warrants the exemplary punishment of death," he added.
One of the convicted men, Vinay Sharma, broke down in tears as the sentence was announced.
Earlier, protesters outside the court had demanded that the four men must be hanged.
Source : BBC News

Delhi gangrape verdict live: Quantum of punishment to be announced on Friday

A fast track court in Delhi will pronounce the quantum of punishment against the four convicts who were held guilty in the December 16 gangarpe case.
Live highlights from the court room:
2.00 pm: The court will announce the quantum of punishment for the convicts in the December 16 Delhi gangrape case at 2.30 pm on Friday.
1.25 pm: Batla house encounter accused got life; was let off for politics; why are these men being considered for death, asks defence.
1.17 pm: Convict Vinay Sharma's lawyer AP Singh says he is a good student, has applied to air force, didn't commit crime.
12.52: pm Defence says state should not be allowed to take simplistic step of execution to show they are curbing crimes against women.
12.43: pm: Defence lawyer's plea: don't award death; young, uneducated boy (Pawan Gupta) was under the influence of alcohol.
12.34 pm: One of the men convicted in the case called out his innocence as police drove him into the courthouse where he and three others faced the possibility of death sentences. Minutes later, the prosecutor called for all four men to be hanged. It was not clear which of the four men was shouting, because his face was obscured behind the police van's heavy metal mesh, but he repeatedly called out, ``I am innocent! I am innocent!'' as the van drove past a scrum of reporters.
12.13 pm: Youngest convict Pawan Gupta's lawyer argues that his conduct is clean; no report of infraction in jail or during trial.
12.06 pm: Defence argues that capital punishment is a violation of fundamental rights; humanity rests on reverence for human life.
12.03 pm: Defence cites a judgement by Supreme Court wherein it had said: "murderers are not born but made, and may be unmade".
11.58 am: Convict Pawan Gupta's lawyer Vivek Sharma says he may have been in bus, does not mean he liable for all offences.
According to the lawyer, convict Pawan Gupta is youngest at 19 and there is possibility of reform.
11.53 am: The convicts seek leniency, saying life imprisonment is rule and death penalty is an exception.
The defence argued that "special reasons for death penalty must relate to the criminal and not to the crime".
11.48 am: Pointing that the prosecutor has said social consciousness demands death, the defence blames media coverage saying it affected society.
The defence further argues that individual roles should be considered for sentencing, saying "court must see whether all convicts are responsible for ghastly act".
11.46 am: Defence opens its argument in the Delhi court, saying "factors outside courtroom have had a bearing on the sentence in the case".
11.43 am: Court dismisses defence appeal against Union Home Minister's statement yesterday that all 4 will hang.
# Four accused brought to court for sentencing; fast-track court had ruled yesterday that they had intentionally caused death of victim.
#Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan calls crime grotesque, diabolical, barbaric. Demands maximum punishment
#Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan cites SC judgements where it said rape and murder convicts must get death.
Victim's family presses for death
With folded hands she pleaded with the judge to ensure her daughter's given justice. She said she had been waiting for this day ever since her daughter died in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 13 days after being gangraped on board a bus.
"Justice will be done in the true sense only if all of them are hanged. They did not think twice before subjecting my daughter to such a brutal assault, then why should the law show any mercy?" the mother said.
The victim's father said they were happy that all four accused were found guilty. "During her last moments, my daughter mentioned that she wanted all four accused dead. Weeping, she told her mother that despite her efforts, she could not escape from their clutches. Her words still haunt me. We want nothing but death for all four," he said.
The woman's male friend, the only witness in the case, was not present in the court on Tuesday.
Source : Indian Express

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