“I was certain that these people will get death penalty… Our daughter was the centre of our lives,” said Sabita Ghosh, the mother of the IT professional Jigisha Ghosh who was abducted and murdered in March 2009, said on Monday after a Delhi court ordered death penalty for two convicts, life sentence for one. The three convicts who abducted her and robbed her of gold jewellery, two mobile phones, and debit and credit cards and dumped her body near Surajkund in Haryana, about 20km from her Vasant Vihar home.
However, the family did not leave it to the police to trace the killers of the young woman. Unconvinced with the police’s explanation that the murderers had left behind few clues, and, hence it would take time to arrest them, Jigisha’s father, JN Ghosh, a former government servant donned the mantle of an investigative officer. He went to the bank, collected statements and receipts of purchases made by the suspects using Jigisha’s debit card. Then he zeroed in on the shops where the purchases have been made and saw the CCTV footage. It is this footage that led to the arrest of the three accused.
While the efforts of Jigisha’s father in bringing the killers to justice are commendable but what he did was not his responsibility. But he was probably forced to do so because he was not convinced that the police would get their act together and suspected that they would end up doing a shoddy investigation. Jigisha’s father cannot be blamed for thinking that way because there have been several cases before this one that have failed to reach a conclusion because of shoddy and unprofessional investigation. A case in point is the Aarushi murder case. The Noida Police had failed to keep general public from visiting and tampering with the crime scene. The police really need to update their skills and follow proper processes while investigating cases. In the Jigisha case, it would seem the accused were police informers raising the question of whether the police verify the credentials of those whose help they seek.