An atmosphere of jubilation and revelry prevailed outside a heavily-guarded Tihar Jail, on Friday (March 20) morning, after the execution of the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case in the wee hours.
Hundreds of people, carrying the national flag and shouting slogans of ‘long live Nirbhaya’ and ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’, gathered outside the Tihar Jail in the early hours of Friday with some of them distributing sweets after the hanging.
Security was beefed up outside the Tihar Jail Number 3 where the four convicts – Mukesh Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31) – were hanged at 5.30 am.
Delhi: Security deployed outside Tihar jail, where the four 2012 Delhi gang-rape death row convicts will be hanged shortly. pic.twitter.com/QxyQi0XnWD
— ANI (@ANI) March 19, 2020
Among the people who gathered outside the jail was social activist Yogita Bhayana. He held a poster which read, ‘Nirbhaya has got justice. The other daughters still await.’
“Justice has been delivered finally,” she said, adding it was a victory of the legal system. Some people distributed sweets after the convicts were hanged. They raised slogans of long live Nirbhaya and “Bharat Mata ki Jai” and waved the national flag.
The horrific gang rape and murder of the 23-year-old physiotherapy intern on December 16, 2012, who came to be known the world over as Nirbhaya, the fearless one, had seared the nation’s soul and triggered countrywide outrage. Akash Deep, who has been associated with Nirbhaya’s family, said he was there to witness the victory of a long-fought legal battle that continued for over seven years.
“It was a tough fight. However, the justice was won today,” he said.
Divya Dhawan, who came from Subhash Nagar, said, “The decision is good but that could have been better if the justice was delivered earlier on time.” Sana, a resident of west Delhi, said, “Nothing will change after this hanging in our society, but we are happy that the four convicts have been hanged and the justice was delivered to Nirbhaya.”
This is the first time that four men have been hanged together in Tihar Jail, South Asia’s largest prison complex that houses more than 16,000 inmates. The executions were carried out after the men exhausted every possible legal avenue to escape the gallows. Their desperate attempts only postponed the inevitable by less than two months after the first date of execution was set for January 22.
In last-gasp attempts, one of the convicts knocked on the doors of the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court just hours before the hanging. In an unprecedented late-night hearing that began at 2.30 am and lasted an hour, a Supreme Court bench dismissed his last plea.
(With inputs from agencies)