“It felt good.” This was how the father of 23-year-old physiotheparist, who was brutally gang-raped on December 16, reacted after the news of the prime accused of the crime allegedly hanging himself in his Tihar prison cell splashed across television on Monday.
“This was the first news I saw on TV in the morning. I don’t care how it sounds, but it felt good. Justice is done. Though the manner in which it happened was a bit surprising,” he said.
He, however, regretted the fact that the accused, Ram Singh, could not be brought to justice by due procedure of the law and was allowed to “choose his death”.
“My daughter was not given the choice to live. But the person who — along with five others — brutalised and killed her was allowed to choose the way he wanted to die,” the father of the 23-year-old physiotherapist.
The woman was brutally gang-raped on a moving bus in South Delhi on December 16, last year, causing massive public outrage. She died on December 29 at a hospital in Singapore.
While the victim’s brothers said Singh should have been hanged in public, the 53-year-old father said, “Had he been hanged even by the jail authorities after the conclusion of trial, it would have been better but the outcome would have been no different.”
“This will help my daughter’s soul rest in peace. Death is what we have been demanding for all the accused. We hope and pray the trial concludes soon and all the other accused are hanged,” he said.
“The suicide shows he was living with a sense of heavy guilt. If he’s guilty, so are others. It’s an open-and-shut case. The trial should be finished as soon as possible,” he said. Ram Singh and four other accused in the case were being tried by a fast-track court in Delhi.
A sixth accused, who has been declared a juvenile, is facing proceedings before the Juvenile Justice Board.
Asked whether he feared the suicide could affect the trial, he said, “Ram Singh was not a witness. He was an accused. The trial should go on as it is.”
He also rejected foul play behind the death of Singh. “From what I understand, it’s a clear case of suicide. And I don’t see any lapse on the part of the jail administration. Jo hona hota hai, woh ho hi jata (what is to happen, must happen),” he said.
“There was no hope for him in the trial. He knew he would be hanged soon,” the victim’s brothers said.