A mother’s love endures through all. The saying has been perfectly manifested by Asha Devi, the mother of a 23-year-old paramedic Jyoti Singh who was brutally gang-raped inside a moving bus in Delhi, back in 2012. She fought for more than seven years, and only because of her perseverance, Nirbhaya finally was served justice today. All the four convicts in the case were hanged in Tihar Jail on March 20.

Asha Devi fought for every woman in the country. In these seven years, many times she was also seen in tears in front of the camera. Meanwhile, there were people, who questioned her for letting her daughter stay out late at night while some asked her to forgive the convicts. One of them was Human Rights lawyer Indira Jaising, whose statement asking Asha Devi to pardon the convicts attracted strong criticism from the everyone.

On Jaising’s tweet asking her to pardon the convicts, Asha Devi told SheThePeople, “I am a mother who wants to avenge the death of her daughter at the hands of these monsters. I will never forgive her for what she has said. It is because of such people that we see so many crimes happening against women in our society and it is because of such mentality that women like us fail to get justice. She should appeal for forgiveness from all the women in our country for what she suggested to me.”

Nirbahaya Jyoti Trust

Asha Devi, along with her husband established the Nirbhaya Jyoti Trust to assist women who have experienced violence and need legal help. Direct assistance is provided through this trust to the survivors. Speaking at one of the events conducted by the Nirbhaya Jyoti Trust, she demanded the Women’s Safety Guarantee Rights Act. 

In a conversation with SheThePeople, she also condemned the functionality of fast track courts. “When the crime of such gravity happens, the government brings in these initiatives to show that they are doing something to prevent these cases. But these moves stay confined to parliament or media debates. Despite the fact that we have fast-track courts, we don’t see any change in a crime or even fast disposal of such rape crimes,” she said.

Reprimanded The Government For Under Utilization Of Nirbhaya Fund

Speaking of the utilization of the Nirbhaya Fund, she had earlier reprimanded the government for underutilization. She told us, “I have not seen proper utilization of the fund. Using the Nirbhaya fund for constructing buildings is wrong. It does not matter that the fund was called Nirbhaya Fund but it was institutionalized for safety and security of women and prevention of rape but even five years later, the government has not made use of it appropriately.”

Also Read: Widow Barred From Wedding: In 2019, We Are Still A Society of Such Biases?

“Even today if survivors go to the police station and seek redressal, they don’t get proper treatment. Our judiciary is flawed, there is a scarcity of judges who can deal with issues like rape with the required sensitivity. The government made the fund, changed the law but six years have gone past and we still seek justice. The perpetrators of Jyoti have not been hanged despite the judgment passed by the Supreme Court. We still don’t know even if they will be hanged or not,” Asha Devi said in another conversation with SheThePeople.

Continued Fighting Even After Seven Long Years

“The offenders derive strength from these delays and loopholes of our legal system and commit crimes because impunity level is so high. Criminals think that when the rapists of Nirbhaya are still alive then even we can do such horrific crimes and get away alive. I see everyone from our state, judiciary to certain sections of our society standing with the convicts now. They want them to be alive on the pretext of their socio-economic condition,” Asha Devi told SheThePeople.

Asha Devi’s fought for seven years with her applaudable perseverance. The justice was delayed by seven years, but finally, it has been served.

Picture Credit- IB Times

Also Read: Coming Soon: All-Women Police Teams In Eight Cities

Get the best of SheThePeople delivered to your inbox - subscribe to Our Power Breakfast Newsletter. Follow us on Twitter , Instagram , Facebook and on YouTube, and stay in the know of women who are standing up, speaking out, and leading change.