Priyadarshini Mattoo, an aspiring lawyer and a beautiful woman, was battered by her rapist and murderer on the fateful day of January 23, 1996. Can the damage caused ever be repaired? Has the offender got what he deserved? Is the family content with the judgement given? Such heart wrenching stories makes me think deep and raise questions. If only this crime could have been stopped, the victim would have been alive leading the life she very much deserved to live.
A name gone down in history but has stayed in our minds. Let’s know more about her and what she went through:
When Priyadarshani Mattoo shifted base from Srinagar to Delhi to pursue her studies in Law, her senior, Santosh Singh who had become obsessed with her, started stalking her and made some indecent proposals. Though many complaints were lodged by the family against Santosh, as a result of which a police escort was offered. Even after taking strict action, the son of an IPS officer, Santosh didn’t stop his acts.
Santosh’s brutal act makes your heart sink. He raped her and then struck her 14 times with a helmet, finally strangling her with a wire. He had hit her face with such force that she could not be recognized. Such agony makes you fear the animal that is hidden in people like Santosh.
Three years after her murder, Santosh was set free by the trial court under benefit of doubt. It was stated that the CBI wasn’t able to produce any clinching evidence. This acquittal was shocking for all, especially when it was clear that only Santosh could have committed the crime. After the failure of the district court to give justice, CBI appealed in High Court in 2000.
Death penalty was awarded by High Court in the year 2006. He appealed against it at the Supreme Court, where the judgement was questioned by defense and his death sentence, as a result, was reduced to life imprisonment.
Also Read: Aruna Shanbaug And Her Saga Of Perpetual Suffering
Such conflicts in judgment would make anyone raise eyebrows. Priyadarshini’s family was utterly dissatisfied with the turn of events and how a death penalty got converted to life imprisonment due to inability to convince the court
Though serving the sentence, Santosh was out on parole for a period of one month to submit his dissertation for his LLM course. First we think the justice wasn’t fair, then on the other hand we realize that the convict is pretty much free to even attempt to pursue a course – a dream that even Priyadarshini dreamt of.
Santosh, the culprit is married and has a kid as well. He, after committing a crime, was pretty much leading a comfortable life. First the delay in justice then we see the culprit leading a normal life until his final verdict, and then he is on parole for his course. Why can’t we have a stronger justice which would be a lesson for all? Is this a never ending saga? Are we going to witness more of such injustices? Why?