CM assures speedy justice in Hinganghat case

In grief: People gather to catch a final glimpse of the body of the lecturer at a hospital in Nagpur. (Right) The distraught father weeps in a car on Monday.

In grief: People gather to catch a final glimpse of the body of the lecturer at a hospital in Nagpur. (Right) The distraught father weeps in a car on Monday.   | Photo Credit: S Sudarshan

24-year-old woman lecturer, who had been critical after being set ablaze by stalker last week, succumbs at Nagpur hospital

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has assured speedy justice to the family of the 24-year-old woman lecturer from Hinganghat in Wardha district, who succumbed to burn injuries on Monday morning after being set ablaze by a stalker last week.

Addressing mediapersons, Mr. Thackeray expressed grief over the woman’s death. He said, “No words are enough to describe the horrors of this incident. I appeal to people to be patient. The government will ensure that the accused is punished for murder. Such criminals have no mercy in Maharashtra, he should get the strictest punishment.”

He added, “We are following up to ensure that the trial and its judgment are completed speedily. Maharashtra is a progressive State that respects women and anything that breaches this image will not be tolerated.”

Mr. Thackeray said his government will study the Disha Act, enacted recently by the Andhra Pradesh government, and try to make laws stricter to prevent such incidents. The Disha Act mandates completion of investigation into cases of sexual offences within seven working days from the time of record, and trial within 14 working days from the date of filing the charge sheet.

Mr. Thackeray said, “We will see what the law is and Maharashtra will improve it to ensure that nobody dares to do such a thing again. All departments will work in co-ordination with each other.”

CM assures speedy justice in Hinganghat case

The victim, Ankita Pisudde, had been critical after sustaining burns on February 3 when she was set afire allegedly by Vikesh Nagrale (27) while she was on the way to her college. “She was undergoing treatment at Orange City Hospital & Research Centre in Nagpur, where doctors declared her dead at 6.55 a.m.,” Hinganghat’s police inspector Satyaveer Bandiwar said.

Later, some angry locals threw stones to block a road in Hinganghat when an ambulance carrying the woman’s body was about half-a-kilometre away from her native village, Daroda. The police then brought the situation under control.

Strong reactions

The news of the victim’s death led to strong political reactions from across the State. Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari tweeted, “I am deeply saddened to know about the demise of the young woman lecturer from Hinganghat who lost her battle to death.The entire society is agitated today. The unfortunate incident has compelled each one of us to introspect. Today women are progressing in all walks of life. They are assuming newer responsibilities and tackling challenges efficiently. In order to further hasten the progress of women, society must bear a positive attitude towards them. My heartfelt condolences to her parents.”

State Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said the trial would be held in a fast-track court and a family member of the victim would be given a government job.

Water Resources Minister Jayant Patil tweeted, “The accused will be given a strong punishment. The mentality behind this heinous crime needs to be tackled. That is why it is important to fast track this case.”

Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said to ensure that such an incident does not happen again, “the government will be more sensitive and take a tough stance in such cases”. Congress Minister Ashok Chavan said on Twitter, “Criminals should have fear of the law. There are laws but their implementation is necessary. If the criminal is brought to justice immediately and given punishment like death sentence, it will instill people’s faith on the justice system.”

Leader of the Opposition Devendra Fadnavis tweeted, “The criminal should be given the strictest punishment so that no woman has to go through this again.”

Ujjwal Nikam named SPP

The State government on Monday appointed senior lawyer Ujjwal Nikam as the special public prosecutor (SPP) in the Hinganghat case.

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray made the announcement on Monday. Mr. Nikam was the prosecution’s main lawyer in the State’s case against 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab. He has also handled several high-profile cases like the 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blasts and film producer Gulshan Kumar’s murder case.

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 8:07:54 AM |

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