Nearly five years after a 23-year-old medical student on her way home from a movie was gang-raped and tortured on a moving bus in Delhi, the Supreme Court has confirmed death for four convicts. A trial court had ruled in 2013 that they should be hanged and the high court confirmed the sentence. But the four – Akshay Thakur, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta and Mukesh – challenged it in the Supreme Court.
On December 16 2012, the young woman and her friend boarded a bus in south Delhi, assured by the driver that they would be dropped off at their destination. The two were then attacked and the woman was gang-raped by six men, brutalized with an iron rod and her intestines were pulled out. She died in a Singapore hospital 13 days later.
“These men should be hanged. There is no crime more barbaric than this….I’m certain about that,” said the father of the woman, who came to be known as “Nirbhaya”.
Ram Singh, the bus driver, was found hanging in his cell in Tihar jail in March 2013, months before they were convicted. Last August, Vinay Sharma also allegedly tries to commit suicide.
The sixth convict was just months short of 18 when he participated in the horrific crime.
He walked out of a correction home in December 2015 after spending three years – the maximum punishment for minors – sparking public outrage and an overhaul of the juvenile law. Now, a juvenile between 16 and 18 years can be treated as an adult if they commit a heinous crime.