Nearly nine months after the gang rape and fatal assault on a 23-year-old physiotherapy student on a moving bus by six persons in the Capital, the Juvenile Justice Board on Saturday held the juvenile among them guilty and sent him to a correctional home for three years.
He has been found guilty of rape and murder. The Board awarded him the maximum punishment provided in the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.
However, he will not remain in the facility for the entire term as his stay there since his arrest in December will also been taken into account.
Speaking to the media outside the JJB office, the victim’s parents expressed their deep anguish and shock at the “unfair” sentencing. “This juvenile was the most brutal of the attackers. The verdict has broken our spirit. We feel cheated.”
In fact, a small group of protesters gathered outside the JJB office, shouted slogans and demanded that the juvenile delinquent be hanged.
The prosecution also said he was the most brutal of the six offenders. The juvenile, who at the time of the incident was a few months short of 18 years, has been held guilty of taking part in the gang rape, assault and murder.
Speaking to the media, chief investigation officer Anil Sharma said: “The juvenile delinquent has been convicted of rape and murder and sentenced to three years in a correctional home, subject to review.”
The brutal crime that left the victim with extensive injuries and caused her death two weeks thereafter, evoked wide-scale public protests with people coming out on the streets to demand ‘exemplary’ punishment to the perpetrators.
Metal bars had been used to inflict massive internal injuries on her, while her male companion was beaten up. The two were later dumped on the roadside, from where they were rescued by the police and taken to Safdarjung Hospital. After a few days stay there, the critically injured girl was shifted to a Singapore hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries.
Four other accused in the case are being tried in a special fast-track court in New Delhi and they face the death penalty. The sixth accused was found dead in his jail cell in March. The fast-track court is expected to hand down its verdict in September.