- December 16 Delhi gangrape: Will it be death penalty for convicts?Gangrape verdict today, 20 of 23 cases in same court ended in acquittalsGangrape verdict today, 20 of 23 cases in same court ended in acquittalsTightening noose around heinous crime: Death sentence for Dec 16 gangrape convicts
All four convicts in the December 16 gangrape and murder case have been awarded death penalty on Friday by a Delhi court.
The convicts - Mukesh (26), Akshay Thakur (28), Pawan Gupta (19) and Vinay Sharma (20) had begged for mercy before Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna, who had held them guilty of gangrape and "cold blooded" murder of a "defenceless" 23-year-old girl in a premeditated manner.
"Death to all," Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna said while delivering the verdict in the case that had evoked nationwide outrage and led the government to bring in a stringent anti-rape law.
"Besides discussing others offences, I straightaway come to section 302 (murder) of IPC. This falls under inhuman nature of the convicts and the gravity of offence they committed cannot be tolerated. Death sentence is given to all the four convicts," he said.
He said, "When crime against women is rising on day-to-day basis, so, at this point in time court cannot keep its eye shut."
There should be exemplary punishment in view of the unparallelled brutality with which the victim was gangraped and murdered, as the case falls under the rarest of rare category. All be given death," the court said while reading out a portion of the order.
"This is a time when serious crime against a woman has come to the fore and now its judiciary's responsibility to instill confidence among the women," it said.
All four were convicted on 11 charges including gangrape, murder, abduction, unnatural offences, attempt to murder, dacoity and criminal conspiracy and could be punished with death. The court is due to sentence them on Wednesday.
"The facts do make all the accused liable for the cold blooded murder of the defenceless prosecutrix," said additional sessions judge Yogesh Khanna.
The prosecution put together strong scientific evidence, including multiple DNA evidence, odontology report and earth sampling tools to tilt the scales in their favour.
The juvenile accused was on August 31 convicted by the Juvenile Justice Board and sentenced to a maximum of three years in a reformation home.
On the night of December 16, last year, Ram Singh, Vinay, Akshay, Pawan, Mukesh and the juvenile had gangraped the girl in a bus after luring her and her 28-year-old male