For justice

Nirbhaya verdict day

Sangeeta Yadav was at the Saket District Court when the death penalty was announced. She captures the mood

It was a sea of people — mostly unconnected with the Nirbhaya case but there in solidarity of her. From schoolchildren, to wheelchair ridden people to parents of many other daughters to a huge youth brigade — thousands waited in the sun to know what the court would mete out to the four accused. Intermittent slogans of balatkariyon ko bahar nikalo rent the air as did the undying anger at what happened nine months ago to a hapless girl.

More than 500 cops on duty to avert mob trouble dotted all the floors of the court complex. Barricades kept the people out even as certain accredited journalists were allowed to go inside and hear the verdict.

Room No 304 on the third floor was where the final verdict was given but all five floors of the premises were jampacked with public, mediapersons and advocates waiting for the clock to strike 2:30 pm when the punishment was to be given.

Speculation was flying wild with some suggesting that two of the four accused may get sentences lesser than life. Others spoke of how the higher courts should not entertain an appeal in this watertight case. One glimpse of accused Mukesh talking to his parents for a brief second had the crowd angry and restless. He was immediately whisked away from public eye but not before the public caught his slight smile and went into chanting slogans of murdabad.

As soon as the death penalty to all was announced from the third floor corridor to the public milling down below, there was all-round applause with chants of sahi hua. It was Friday the 13th but for Delhiites it was all about a big omen being crushed — at least for now.

(The article appeared in The Pioneer Newspaper-


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