Former IPS officer and current Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry Kiran Bedi has given her viewpoint on the verdict pronounced in the horrific Kathua rape and murder case in which six out of the seven accused were sentenced to life imprisonment for raping and murdering an eight-year-old in J&K's Kathua last year. Kiran Bedi felt that life imprisonment sentences were not an effective form of punishment as while the convicts do lose their liberty, they nonetheless become accustomed to the system inside the jail eventually.
" I really hope that life imprisonment means for the entire life and not just for 14 years or an additional four years after which the sentence is referred to a board that could possibly reduce the term of the sentence. As a common man, we all want them to get the ultimate punishment but we ought to consider why the judges decided to go easy on them and give them a life imprisonment sentence. The evidences examined might have convinced the judges of something and hence they pronounced the verdict", said Bedi.
Continuing on the train of thought regarding the rape and murder convicts becoming accustomed to the system, Kiran Bedi made a reference to stronger punishment and said, "If irrefutable evidence has been examined and the matter is proved in the court of law, then I feel they should be done away with permanently rather than keeping them in the prison and making it a load for the system".
Three convicts, Sanji Ram, Parvesh Kumar & Deepak Khajuria have been sentenced to life imprisonment. Furthermore, the other three convicts - SI Anand Dutta, head constable Tilak Raj, and special police officer Surender Verma sentenced to five years for destruction of evidence.
Earlier in the day, the verdict of the in-camera trial in the case of rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl from a nomadic community in Kathua in Jammu and Kashmir was delivered in the Pathankot special court where six of the seven accused were pronounced guilty.
According to the 15-page charge sheet, the eight-year-old girl, who was kidnapped on January 10 last year, was allegedly raped in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district after having been kept sedated for four days before she was bludgeoned to death.