Ghaziabad fake encounter: Victims’ families wanted life term so convicts could ‘feel their pain’
Families of victims who had appeared at the Ghaziabad court on Wednesday said they all wanted life imprisonment for the four convicts. They said they have suffered for 20 years and they want the convicts and their families to know how they felt.Updated: Mar 03, 2017 13:51 IST
Families of victims who had appeared at the Ghaziabad court on Wednesday said they all wanted life imprisonment for the four convicts.
“They killed our family members in cold blood and in a planned manner. My son was shot in the head; he must have gone through so much pain. Life imprisonment will remind the convicts about the pain we suffered each day. Their families, whenever they go to visit them in jail, will go through the same pain,” 65-year-old Sheela Devi, Ashok’s mother, said.
She lost her husband in 2008 and had to sell her house to pursue the case, but she did not miss a single hearing. Even when her health was poor, she would come to the court and stay there for the day.
“Death penalty will kill the convicts within a couple of minutes of suffering. We want them to suffer the pain for the rest of their lives. They approached us for a compromise but we did not budge. My wife’s health is poor but she keeps asking if we got justice? Today, I will answer her,” Mahendra Singh, Pravesh’s father, said.
The four families suffered for nearly two decades but did not give up the case. Those who attended the hearing on Wednesday were also sympathetic to the victim’s families and said that the state government should provide them financial help.
Vir Singh, Jasbir’s brother, contested the case as their father had died before the case and their mother died during the trial. “A year later after my brother died, his wife left home and remarried. She had left their two-and-a-half-year-old daughter. His daughter still doesn’t know that her father was killed by the police. She is studying and her upbringing is taken care of by her maternal uncle. We have not told her about the incident,” Vir Singh said. He runs a tea stall in Modi Nagar.
The families said that there were ‘tareekh pe tareekh’ (no end to hearings) for more than 20 years. “The accused approached higher courts and obtained stay several times. In some instances, the judges also got transferred. The case also got transferred from Dehradun to Ghaziabad. All this created delay and added to our suffering,” Pushpa, Ashok’s sister, said.
Among the attendants at the final hearing were 14-year-old Arjun and 19-year-old Kajal, Ashok’s nephew and niece, who watched the convicts being sentenced. “I never saw my ‘mama’ (maternal uncle) as the police had shot him dead. We had only one uncle and we lost even before we were born. We try to remember him through his photographs and imagine what he would have done for us had he been alive,” Kajal said.
“I also attended case hearings with my ‘nani’ (maternal grandmother) and made it a point to come today as I wanted to see the guilty going to jail. Our entire family is in shambles since my uncle (Ashok) was gunned down,” Arjun said.
Jalaluddin’s 70-year-old mother had come to court on the judgment day. She had lost sight in one eye during the case trial and is losing sight in her other eye as well. “I am relieved that my son’s killing has been avenged today. The pain will remain forever but justice is finally done,” she said.