Visual from the site of encounter in Telangana (Picture Courtesy - Telangana Police)
Visual from the site of encounter in Telangana (Picture Courtesy - Telangana Police)

Hooliganism, sheer misuse of power: Senior advocates 'condemn' Telangana encounter, cite SC guidelines

ANI | Updated: Dec 07, 2019 13:19 IST

New Delhi [India], Dec 7 (ANI): Counsels for convicts of the 2012 Delhi gang-rape case have condemned the encounter killing of four accused in the rape and murder of a woman veterinary doctor in Telangana on Friday, and stated that this is "hooliganism" and "sheer misuse of power".
"I condemn the killing of the four arrested accused persons in police custody. This is completely unacceptable in a democratic civilised society like India. Rule of law should prevail in our country. No matter how diabolical the crime is, the accused has to be tried in accordance with law and punished. The Criminal Trials should be concluded at the earliest. There are various instances of delay in trial but that doesn't mean, the police resort to the killing of the accused persons in complete disregard to the rule of law," said senior advocate Vikas Pahwa.
Pahwa further stated that to deal with the delays in criminal trials, the justice system should be improved.
"The use of digital technology in the trial courts would certainly help. The SDM should conduct an inquiry, to check the authenticity of the encounter and submit the report in two weeks. The police cannot become the prosecutor, the judge and the executioner. The sentiments of the society cannot override the Rule of Law," he added.
Senior advocate Colin Gonsalves said that the police should have "conducted prosecution of the rape accused instead of killing them in encounter."
"Encounter is not the right way to deal such things. Encounter is nothing but killing people in cold blood manner. The police should be arrested immediately," he said.
Advocate AP Singh, counsels for convicts in 2012 Delhi gang-rape case, said, "Should all the courts in the country be shut down? Should all the laws and the constitution be closed down? This is the hooliganism and shear misuse of power by the police.
"Is it not the clear violation of Supreme Court's guidelines? The police did this only for brushing up their mistakes and image making. It was done because the police was under immense public and media pressure. They shot them even before they could even prove that the four persons were the actual accused persons. They were not even tried," Singh added.
Senior advocate Vrinda Grover, amicus curie in the 2012 Delhi gang-rape case, has also condemned the encounter and said that this was surely not the thing that the women in this country had been asking for.
"We do not want any encounters or custodial killings in our name. What we are asking is tough questions on police investigations, prosecutions. This was done to withdraw attention from their accountability. Why should we see this as any form of justice? Nobody is going to ask such questions and violence against women will still not stop. It seems that the rule of law has taken a flight away from this country. And the people who have asked the rule of law to be abandoned are the ones sitting in the parliament. Nobody is serious about these issues," he Grover said.
Senior advocate and former ASG Vikas Singh said that a quick enquiry needs to be ordered to find out the truth. "That will restore the confidence of the people in the rule of law," he added.
The Supreme Court had in 2014 stated that "Independent investigation into the incident/encounter shall be conducted by the CID or police team of another police station under the supervision of a senior officer (at least a level above the head of the police party engaged in the encounter)."
Meanwhile, advocate Seema Kushwaha, counsel for 2012 Delhi gang-rape victim's parents, said, "Those who talk of human rights over this encounter, I would like to ask them that did they ever go to the accused or their families and told them not to do such crimes? Do women in this country have no human rights? The girl in Unnao was burnt by the accused who were out on bail, where were these human rights activists then?"
All four accused in the case were killed in an encounter with the police when they tried to escape while being taken to the crime spot, police said on Friday.
The doctor was brutally gang-raped and killed by the four before they burnt her body in Shamshabad area on November 27. (ANI)