Swati Maliwal Writes To President To Accelerate Nirbhaya Case
More than six months after the Supreme Court revoked the review petition of the convicts in Nirbhaya gang rape case, Delhi Commission for Women chief Swati Maliwal has written to the President Ram Nath Kovind demanding streamlining of the judicial process to make the hanging of Nirbhaya’s rapists time-bound. This letter has come in the wake of news reports that the convicts in the Nirbhaya rape case are planning to file a curative petition.
“It is very unfortunate that more than six years have passed since the gruesome rape and murder of Nirbhaya which occurred in 2012 and till date, even Nirbhaya has not got justice. Nirbhaya’s parents are still running from pillar to post in order to ensure justice for their daughter,” wrote Maliwal in her letter.
Six men, including one who was a juvenile at the time of the incident, gang raped and grievously assaulted 23-year-old Jyoti Singh (referred to as Nirbhaya) in a moving bus in December 2012. After the rape, they threw her out of the bus. She passed away from the injuries sustained from the assault. It has been over six years since the incident, and close to two years since the Supreme Court ordered capital punishment. Of the six men, one named Ram Singh committed suicide inside jail and the juvenile was given the maximum punishment of three years in a reform facility and has since been released.
The four remaining men filed a review petition which the apex court also revoked in July last year. However, till date the order for execution of the accused persons has not been complied with despite the passage of several months. Now their advocate has hinted that they might file a curative petition in the Supreme Court.
“There appears to be no end to this case and the wait for justice for Nirbhaya keeps dragging on. It is true that delayed justice is justice denied. In this regard, I urge your hon’ble self to kindly intervene in this matter and direct for a time-bound process within which the convicts shall be hanged and Nirbhaya will finally get justice.
In this regard, it is learnt that while there is a fixed time within which a review petition can be filed, there is no time-limit for filing of curative and mercy petitions. I request your hon’ble self to kindly consider this matter and at-least in cases of rape, there should be a fixed timeline within which the entire judicial process needs to be completed.
If deemed fit, your hon’ble self may kindly direct the Union Government to immediately introduce an ordinance in the country that ensures that in the cases of rape, the trial is completed within three months of the crime and further, all appeals, review petitions and curative petitions are disposed within the next three months. There should be a guarantee of justice within six months,” wrote Maliwal.
There appears to be no end to this case and the wait for justice for Nirbhaya keeps dragging on. It is true that delayed justice is justice denied. In this regard, I urge your hon’ble self to kindly intervene in this matter and direct for a time-bound process within which the convicts shall be hanged and Nirbhaya will finally get justice.
Singh’s mother Asha Devi spoke with SheThePeople.TV and expressed her gratitude towards Maliwal for standing firm with her and fighting for justice. “She is the only person who has raised her voice in this case otherwise both the Delhi government and the Central Government is silent on this. We also filed a petition in the Patiala House Court in December after waiting for six months after the SC rejected the review petition of the convicts. We also went for three hearings but the wait for justice is still going on,” she said.
“By filing a new curative petition now, the convicts are only trying to buy more time. They are taking advantage of the slow-pace with which our judicial system works. As time is passing, they have started to think that they will come out free. This is a way of harassing the family of the victim by making us wait for so long and then go completely silent on the issue,” Devi added.