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Paid back in own blood

It was just another pre-exam day at home that went so terribly wrong that his family is yet to reconcile itself with the sudden tragedy.

delhi Updated: Mar 14, 2011 00:04 IST
Jatin Anand

It was just another pre-exam day at home that went so terribly wrong that his family is yet to reconcile itself with the sudden tragedy.

Yash Singhal, 16, was stabbed to death on Saturday.

The motive for the murder: he wanted the Rs 2,500 he lent to a friend to be returned to him.

“He was a very bright student and an immensely religious child. We were assured that his would be a bright future and felt sorry for his father because we knew that a boy as smart as Yash would have chosen to make his own way over sitting at his father’s shop,” said Monish Gupta, 35, Yash Singhal’s uncle.

The slain 16-year-old’s father, Manmohan Gupta, owns and operates an embroidery unit in north Delhi’s Sadar Bazar.

An elder brother to his 11-year-old sister Vritika and a student of class 10 at Srinivaspuri’s Cambridge School, Yash was on his way to meet his friends before a group-study arrangement when he was stopped and stabbed to death on Saturday evening.

“Why did they do it? Just because Yash had asked one of them to return the R2,500 that he had persuaded his father with a lot of difficulty to lend to one of his friends,” said an incensed Sanjay Gupta, 40, another of Yash’s uncles.

“It was the same boy who was leading the gang that stabbed him and left him bleeding next to a garbage dump,” Gupta added.

“What was most painful was hearing him utter each of their names one by one. He was telling us who were responsible for his condition on our way to the Trauma Centre,” Monish said.

“I remember the thrill we’d felt when the doctors said that he would be fine after conducting his CT scan – but they were wrong,” he added.

Police said they were powerless in the face of Yash’s murderers.

“We have taken relevant steps as per the Juvenile Justice Act. Juveniles cannot be arrested or punished, no matter what crime they commit,” said a senior police officer requesting anonymity.

“We can only question them, detain them and usually end-up letting them off in a couple of hours,” the officer added.

Delhi’s murder spree: 93% killers are first timers, below 25 yrs

New Delhi: A 16-year-old student became the latest offering at the altar of our impatient and violent capital's gradually growing obsession with murder on Saturday.

A crime which has claimed close to 3,000 lives since the year 2006, incidents of murder are at their highest in the last five years.

“While most heinous crimes such as kidnapping, dacoity and even attempt to murder have been seen to be declining, murder is one crime that is at its highest in the last five years,” said a senior police officer requesting anonymity.

In fact, Yash Singhal, a class 10 student at Cambridge School in southeast Delhi's Sriniwaspuri, is understood to have been the 40th victim of murder, so far, this year.

Singhal was stabbed to death after being mercilessly assaulted by a gang of nine minor boys, one of whom owed him a paltry Rs 2,500, half-a-kilometre from his residence on Saturday evening.

“While 476 murders were reported in the year 2006, the number increased to 495 the next year,” said the officer.

“A major increase was noticed in 2008, with as many as 554 murders having been reported. A minor decrease, that is of two cases, brought the figure to 552 in 2009. As many as 565 murders were reported in the year 2010,” the officer added.

Needless to say, the police are a worried lot.

While no crime can be justified, the fact that the motive for the heinous offence is gradually becoming trivial and petty, is shocking most people.

“What is worrying is the fact that the motive for murder is slowly but gradually shifting from being crime-related to outlandish reasons such as a violent fight over burning crackers turning into a gruesome murder which was reported at Kotwali or over forcibly taking a beedi from someone in Palam Village, reported in the year 2010,” said the officer.

The Delhi Police arrested as many as 884 persons for murder in 2010.

A significant number of the accused that is 93% of them were first-timers.

Fifty seven percentof them were aged below 25 years.