The quantum of sentence to convicts--Mukesh, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta and Akshay Thakur--in the case that shook the nation's conscience will be argued on Wednesday before Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna, who delivered 237-page judgement. CRIME COMMITTED IN PREMEDITATED MANNER READ MORE: Timeline of December 16 gang-rape case Parents of the victim demanded death for all the four men saying justice will not be done if they are not hanged. JPN/Agencies
"The facts of the case make all accused liable for the cold blooded murder of the defenceless prosecutrix and thus the offence under Section 302 (murder) read with Section 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC stands proved and the accused persons are thus convicted," the judge said.
"All the accused in pursuance of the conspiracy committed gang-rape with the prosecutrix and thus are convicted under section 376(2)(g) (gang-rape) of the IPC with the aid of section 120B IPC," the court said.
Rejecting the defence argument that the girl had died due to delayed medical aid and infection caught in the hospital during treatment, judge Khanna observed that "the important aspect of this trial is the manner in which both rods and hands were used for damaging the alimentary canal and pulling it out from the body (of the girl).
"This act of complete destruction of the most vital parts of the body can never be termed as intending to cause bodily injuries and rather it will be act done with intention of causing death."
The judge said they had conspired to gang-rape her and the crime had been committed in a "premeditated manner".
"The accused are also liable for gang-rape committed with the prosecutrix in pursuance to their conspiracy," the court said.
In his judgement, the judge said, "Circumstances, conduct and overt act of the accused persons narrated/described clearly establish that accused persons had attempted to kill the complainant."
The December 16 incident in which the paramedic was savagely gang-raped and brutally assaulted led to nationwide streets protest that heralded changes in the law.
The changes provide even for death in the case of rape but the present case was heard under the old provisions of IPC that provides a maximum sentence of life term for rape.
The fifth convict Ram Singh had committed suicide in Tihar Jail in March. Sixth convict was a juvenile at the time of the incident and has been given a maximum of three years sentence in a reformation home.
The judge said even though proceedings against accused Ram Singh (34) were abated on his death, "he is also convicted under same sections (gang-rape, murder and other offences)".
Soon after the verdict was delivered, Pawan broke down while Vinay was in a state of shock.
Mukesh was heard saying that "they would have to face the consequences for what they have done". Another convict Akshay seemed unaffected.
In his judgement, the judge said, "The act of abducting the victim by deceit, robbing, causing injuries and the act of some accused in pinning the complainant (male friend) while others took their turns in committing rape/unnatural sex and while one of them continued driving the bus and lastly throwing them out of the moving bus, sharing booty, destroying evidence thoroughly show illegal agreement between them to commit such illegal act and they had knowledge of the same."
Dealing extensively with the DNA analysis of the material collected by the probe agency, the court said, "DNA analysis duly establishes the identity of victim and of the accused persons beyond doubt to be the persons inside the bus at the relevant time."
Besides the DNA analysis, the court also relied upon the finger print report and the odontology report of the bite marks on the body of the victim to conclude that the convicts were the persons who had brutally attacked and gang-raped the victim.
On Mukesh's plea that he was only driving the bus and had not participated in the gang-rape, the court said in a case of gang-rape and murder the liability of all the accused is equal.
"If the accused person had participated in the incident then the question as to who committed the rape or could not complete the act of rape becomes irrelevant for conviction of gang-rape," the court said.
"The MLC of the girl shows brief history of intercourse through vagina and anus. It rather shows rectal tear. Further in her dying declaration, the prosecutrix stated before the SDM that the accused persons not only raped her but also committed unnatural sex with her through her anus.
"This fact is further proved by the DNA report of accused Ram Singh... Hence all the accused persons are convicted for offence under section 377 IPC read with 120B," the judge said.
The judge expressed "appreciation for the dedication" of the team of public prosecutors led by Special Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan and Additional Public Prosecutor Rajiv Mohan for "displaying highest degree of professional standards and competence and efficaciously assisting the court in the trial". He was also grateful to Amicus Curiae Rajiv Jain and the defence counsel.
"Lastly, I also feel it necessary to mention the professional acumen with which the Delhi Police investigated the case especially the way they made use of the scientific tools. I hope this would be replicated in all other cases."
Besides gang-rape, murder and conspiracy, the court held Mukesh (26), Vinay Sharma (20), Pawan Gupta (19) and Akshay Thakur (28) guilty of attempt to murder, unnatural offences, dacoity, destruction of evidence, kidnapping or abducting in order to murder, while acquitting them of the charge of murder in dacoity.
The court also convicted them for kidnapping or abducting with intent to secretly and wrongfully confining a person, abducting to subject a person to grievous hurt and slavery, abducting woman to cause her defilement, voluntarily causing hurt in committing robbery and dishonestly receiving property stolen in the commission of a dacoity of the IPC.
On the fateful night, Ram Singh, Vinay, Akshay, Pawan, Mukesh and the juvenile had gang-raped the girl in a bus after luring her and her 28-year-old male friend, who was also assaulted, on board the vehicle, which was later found to be plying illegally on Delhi roads.
The victim's friend, a software engineer, had fractured his limbs in the incident. The girl succumbed to her injuries on December 29, 2012 at a Singapore hospital.
The court relied on the dying declaration of the victim, forensic evidence, including finger prints, dental models, DNA samples and other medical reports of the convicts, electronic evidence and the statements given by them to the police after their arrests.
The judge also said that the presence of the convicts in the bus in which the crime was committed has been established through the location of their mobile networks.
VICTIM’S FAMILY DEMANDS DEATH
"We have been waiting for last nine months for justice to our daughter. These people should be hanged as they were so brutal to my daughter. Justice won't be done if they are not handed death sentence," said the girl's mother.
"We have spent last few months thinking about the case. What will happen in the case? When verdict in the juvenile's case came, we were shattered as the ruling was not in our favour," the mother said.
The father of the girl said the juvenile was held guilty on all counts of gang-rape and murder but the Juvenile Justice Board had given him only three years detention in a reform home.
"We do not want anything less than their hanging considering the brutality that was inflicted on our daughter. The verdict should set an example so that nobody commits such a barbaric act," the father, who had sold his land in Uttar Pradesh's Balia for his daughter's education, said.
The quantum of sentence to convicts--Mukesh, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta and Akshay Thakur--in the case that shook the nation's conscience will be argued on Wednesday before Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna, who delivered 237-page judgement.
CRIME COMMITTED IN PREMEDITATED MANNER
READ MORE: Timeline of December 16 gang-rape case
Parents of the victim demanded death for all the four men saying justice will not be done if they are not hanged.