Rape case: HC upholds Prez guards’ sentences
Nine years after a 17-year-old Delhi University student was raped and robbed at the Buddha Jayanti Park by President's Body Guards, the Delhi High Court on Thursday upheld rigorous life imprisonment awarded by trial court to two guards.
Confirming the life sentence given by a trial court on August 22, 2009, the high court said Harpreet Singh and Satyender Singh had "exhibited moral turpitude of extreme depravity".
The court also upheld the jail term of 10 years given to two other accused — Kuldeep Singh and Manish Kumar — for robbery, kidnapping and helping their colleagues in the crime. The incident on October 6, 2003, had sent shockwaves across the Capital.
"Harpreet and Satyender deserve the maximum punishment i.e. life imprisonment. They were military men and in uniform in broad daylight committed rape of a young girl, who was completely helpless before them. They have exhibited moral turpitude of extreme depravity by subjecting the teenage prosecutrix to rape and making her a victim of their physical lust.Both of them are more than six feet tall and well built. Instead of defending and protecting the public, they have committed an offence which does not deserve any soft or lenient approach," said the court dismissing their appeals against conviction.
The ghastly crime was committed when the Delhi University student, along with her boyfriend, had gone to Buddha Jayanti park in the backyard of the Presidential Palace complex on October six, 2003, to watch a programme of the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama.
She was detained and robbed by the four convicts before being raped by Harpreet and Satyender while the other two kept watch.
The prosecution had examined a total of 25 witnesses, including the victim and her friend, to establish its case.