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New Delhi, March 20, 2020
More than seven years after committing the gruesome crime, the four men convicted for the brutal gang-rape and murder of a physiotherapy student in the national capital were hanged in Tihar Jail in the early hours of Friday.
The four convicts -- Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur, Mukesh Singh and Pawan Gupta -- finally paid the price for the heinous crime they committed on the night of December 16, 2012.
With the execution of the convicts, the curtains have finally been brought down on the case which gathered dust for several years.
Over the years, the convicts adopted several manoeuvres to delay the hanging and even succeeded thrice. This time, however, they could not escape the clutches of the judiciary and were hanged till death.
The case pertained to the gruesome gang-rape of a 23-year-old girl by six men in a moving bus on the fateful night of December 16, 2012.
The girl, who was later dubbed as Nirbhaya, and her male friend was assaulted and thrown on the road. She was subjected to unspeakable brutalities, which ripped her intestines apart. She succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital 13 days later.
The horrific crime shook the conscience of the nation and led to country-wide protests and a change in the country's rape laws.
All the men, including the prime accused and a minor, were nabbed within a few days of the incident.
The prime accused, Ram Singh, allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself in the Tihar Jail days after the trial began.
The juvenile was put in a correctional home for three years and later released. The remaining four men were convicted for the crime on September 13, 2013 and were hanged on Friday in South Asia's largest prison complex.
Soon after the four men were hanged, slogans hailing the victim and bashing the advocate who defended the convicts echoed outside the jail premises on Shaheed Bhagat Singh Marg.
As soon as the news of the executions broke out, the crowd which assembled outside Gate No. 3 of Tihar Jail started raising slogans like "Nirbhaya Zindabad, AP Singh Murdabad", as people burst into celebrations and distributed sweets.
Even the coronavirus outbreak could not deter the people from assembling in large numbers outside the jail premises to express their solidarity with Nirbhaya.
"My wife advised me not to step out amidst the coronavirus outbreak, but I could not contain my happiness as justice is being imparted to my sister," said Ravinder Singh Bakshi, a resident of Delhi's Hari Nagar.
The huge gathering came amidst curbs imposed by the Delhi government on social gatherings of more than 20 people in a bid to check the spread of coronavirus.
Security personnel had to step in and tighten the arrangements around the jail complex to keep a check on any untoward incident.