“Truth has triumphed but it has come at an enormous cost,” said N. P. Veerasamy, father of Kokilavani, one of the three girl students of the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) who were burnt alive when a mob set their college bus on fire near Dharmapuri.

“Though delayed, justice has at last won. It has been a ten-year-long nerve-wracking battle. We, the traumatised family members, have lost not only our lovely daughters in their prime but many valuable things in our lives. My wife, Saraswathy, is living like a vegetable since that fateful day. She never talks or responds,” he says. A similar fate has befallen the family members of other two girls - Gayathri and Hemalatha, who perished in the mob violence along with Kokilavani.

Wholeheartedly welcoming the Supreme Court order, K. Kasiammal, mother of K. Hemalatha, expresses hope that no further innocent life is lost in any form of violence. Hemalatha's father, R. Kesavachandran, who retired as Assistant Manager from Indian Bank, slipped into depression and died last April.

“The death sentence for the accused is a vindication of our struggle for justice,” she remarked.