New Delhi: All Vyapam scam cases – involving irregularities in admissions and recruitment in Madhya Pradesh – are to be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) irrespective of the stage of their investigations or trial, the Supreme Court directed on Friday.
“We direct the CBI to take over 72 cases which are in different stages, within three weeks,” said a bench of Chief Justice H.L. Dattu, Justice C. Nagappan and Justice Amitava Roy.
The apex court also directed the Special Task Force/Special Investigation Team that has been investigating these cases, to extend all co-operation when such a request was made by the CBI.
Noting that the CBI was already processing the appointment of 19 public prosecutors to lead its cases before the trial court, the court asked it to complete the appointment of 48 public prosecutors needed to cover 24 trial courts.
Fixing October 9 as the next date of hearing, the apex court asked the CBI to file a status report on compliance of its orders.
As Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar informed the court of the difficulty the probe agency was facing in getting the required manpower, the court reminded him of the commitment made by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi that the agency would take over all the cases including the appointment of public prosecutors.
Appearing for the department of personnel and training, Rohatgi told the court that the investigating agency had 6,000 people and another 900 are being recruited. Police officers ranked as inspectors or sub-inspectors are the main requirement but the difficulty being faced is that people from state police are not inclined to come to CBI.
Appearing for one of the petitioners, senior counsel K.T.S.Tulsi opined that generally it has been seen that people are happy to come to CBI on deputation. Rohatgi said that it was only in the case of senior officers and not ground-level officers. At the lower rung, personnel from state police are reluctant to come over to CBI as it results in their dislocation from the state.
Gender discrimination is the root of many evils. While keeping the aspiration of females down, certain males have committed many wrongs in the past. Apart from various kinds of physical tortures, the mental tortures undergone by defenseless females are endless. Within the confinement of four-walls innumerable sins are still being committed which mostly go unreported. However, it was Nirbhaya’s rape incident in Delhi that was “instrumental” in bringing about a kind of gender awareness renaissance in India. Post-Nirbhaya incident, a lot many changes in the laws have been made. The safety and security of women have been prioritized, the nation-wide the whole police departments have been sensitized, to a greater extent the road transportation has been made women-friendly.
Thanks to the countless number of protests across the country condemning the six rapists. The people from all walks of life came together and relentlessly pressurized the government that the Nirbhaya convicts must be awarded capital punishment. Media’s contribution in the campaign is immeasurable. Alas, India’s judiciary is so annoyingly slow it has taken over 7 years to pronounce the death sentence.
However, now nothing could be so mind-blowing than the flood of condemnation against the comments by a veteran advocate and social activist Indira Jaising. Without a sense of guilt and potential backlash, she suggested that the convicts be “forgiven” by the parents. Jaising’s idea has clearly touched a raw nerve of the major population in the country. People’s anger is spilled well over social media. What is most noteworthy is the scathing condemnation directly from the horse mouth — the mother Asha Devi. A very bold lady, who determinedly fought for justice for so many years, thunders – “Who is Indira Jaising to give me such a suggestion? The whole country wants the convicts to be executed. Just because of people like her, justice is not done with rape victims,” Asha Devi aptly further adds — “Can’t believe how Jaising even dared to suggest such this; I met her many times over the years in Supreme Court, “not once” she asked for my well-being and today she is speaking for convicts. Such people earn a livelihood by supporting rapists; hence rape incidents don’t stop,”
The latter comments by the Nirbhaya’s mother clearly hint the doubt at the “integrity” of the advocate Ms. Jaising. How on earth that one who has not spoken a word of sympathy in spite of many encounters in the court can reserves the right to suggest that which offends the distressed victim party. Asha Devi deserves a salute for her boldness. Yes, India Jaising is one of the advocates who knocked the door of the Chief Justice of India in the middle of the night in July 2015 in order to seek the mercy for the dreaded terrorist Yakub Menon.
Again, here is another bombshell to drop which many of us may have forgotten. Can we ever “forgive” for the shocking proposal in 2015 by Delhi Government to award the Nirbhaya juvenile convicts with Rs 10000/- and a sewing machine? Who has approved such bizarre ideas and which leaders are responsible? What kind of lesson should the citizens take from this?
I think the public is right and more sensible now to point out the “hard cruelty” with which the gang had sexually tortured Nirbhaya that night. They had used the iron-rod to inflict deep injuries upon the girl which is unspeakable, which is very unpardonable. So, given the increasing cases of rapes and subsequent inhumane cruelty and cold-blooded killings, Capital punishment can be the only answer and “one of the deterrents”. Before the divine retribution, the hard rod of punishment should not be spared at all.
Salil Gewali is a well-known writer and author of ‘Great minds on India’. Twitter: @SGewali