Delhi techie who chopped wife into 72 pieces is never talked of in front of kids
Victim’s brother, who is now raising the children along with his wife, says the struggle of not having a parent shows for the children. They, the uncle said, once asked if they could call him ‘papa’.Updated: Sep 01, 2017 22:52 IST
The children of Rajesh Gulati, who was sentenced to a life term on Friday for murdering his wife in 2010, never hear of their father.
Since their mother was killed, the two children — a son and a daughter — live with their maternal uncle Sujan Kumar Pradhan and his family.
“We never discuss anything about their father or even about the case with the kids... we’re taking great care to bring them up sensitively and try to keep them away from anything (related to Rajesh) that may impact them,” said Pradhan, who led a seven-year fight for justice for his sister Anupama.
Rajesh, according to his confession to police, killed Anupama on October 17, 2010 by slamming her head against the wall in a fit of rage. The case became infamous after details such as how Rajesh cut his wife’s body into 72 pieces and stored it into a freezer emerged.
“The effect (of being bereft of parents) becomes apparent during parents-teachers meeting at their school,” Pradhan said, adding that the kids once asked him if they could call him ‘papa’.
The children, twins, were four years old at the time of their mother’s death.
In Class 6 now, they have been living in a joint family with their maternal grandparents, maternal uncle, aunt and their two children in Delhi since the murder.
“Now that Rajesh has been convicted, we will file for the official guardianship of the kids,” Pradhan said. During the course of the trial, Rajesh’s family had applied for the children’s custody, but a family court dismissed it.
The children are American citizens, since they were born when the couple was in United States.
The court took notice of the children’s plight and ordered for a monetary fine of Rs 15 lakh on Rajesh, of which Rs 14.30 lakh was to be turned into a fixed deposit for the welfare of the twins.
When the defence lawyer prayed against a possible death sentence citing Article 21 of the Constitution (which promises protection of life and personal liberty), the prosecution argued how Article 21 had been violated for the victim and her children.
“Because of what happened, the minor kids today recognise neither their mother nor father… the brutal crime deprived the children’s right to a happy life,” district government counsel GP Raturi, prayed to the court.