NEW DELHI: The national capital does not want the juvenile criminal in the December 16, 2012, gangrape to go scot-free, but the Delhi police think it is fine for him and safe for the city’s women if he walks the streets again.
A confidential report by Central intelligence agencies prepared two months ago had claimed that the murderer-rapist, who has been lodged in an observation home, had been radicalised after coming in contact with a juvenile involved in the 2011 Delhi High Court blasts. The police, however, said there was no evidence to arrest him, even though it didn’t bother to quiz him, or the juvenile who is said to have radicalised him. A top officer’s explanation was that nobody had complained, in spite of the Ministry of Home Affairs inviting observations on the criminal’s state of radicalisation.
A top police officer said, “There is no ample evidence. The Central intelligence agencies had prepared a report and shared it with us. However, it will not stand in a court of law.” The capital’s protectors in khaki have refused to book the violent criminal under sections of the National Security Act (NSA). The ministry sought an opinion from the police over booking the “radicalised” rapist — now 20 years and seven months old — under the National Security Act since he is deemed a threat to society.
The police, having “thoroughly interacted” with their legal department, have informed the ministry that they cannot book him under the Act. In the report, the police stated that there was no prima facie evidence of the juvenile being a threat to national security.
The police have inexplicably stated that there is “less chance of public order being disturbed” if the juvenile accused in the Nirbhaya case is released. They also said there are no “immediate cases” registered in Delhi or other parts of the country against him. The criminal’s advocate, Rajesh Tiwari, has prepared a strong defence in case the government refuses to let him go scot-free. He remained tight-lipped on the issue.
“Imposing the NSA on the juvenile is not possible legally. The prosecution will have to show enough material and substance to prove that his activity has been anti-national. Even if the ministry imposes such a section, it is legally untenable,” said lawyer Rajesh Kumar Mishra, who specialises in juvenile cases.
“The only way the court can intervene is to send him to a reformation home keeping in mind the anger and anguish against the accused prevailing in society,” he said.
JCP Dependra Pathak refused to comment, saying, “The matter is before the honourable High Court. We will follow its direction.”
On BJP leader Subramanian Swamy’s plea last week that the rapist shouldn’t be released till it is demonstrably assured that he has reformed, the Delhi High Court sought the Centre’s response on the measures taken, if any, regarding his post-release rehabilitation.
It also issued notices to the ministries of law and home and the juvenile convict through the Juvenile Justice Board, and asked the government to get instructions from the committee. The matter is listed for hearing on Monday.