Who is hapless?

Pumping Fist Graffiti

Sometimes Indian justice system leaves me stunned with the sheer absurdity of it.

The Supreme Court today discarded the contention of the police that the death sentence awarded to former Youth Congress leader Sushil Sharma should be retained as he shot dead and burnt the body of a helpless woman, his wife Naina Sahni, saying she was “not hapless”.

A Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam discarded the death sentence awarded to Sushil Sharma (ex-youth Congress leader) remarking that Sushil Sharma was not in a “dominant position” with regard to his wife – a qualified pilot and an independent lady capable of taking her own decisions.

“The appellant (Sharma) was the state President of the Youth Congress in Delhi. The deceased was a qualified pilot and she was also the state General Secretary of Youth Congress (Girls Wing), Delhi. She was an independent lady who was capable of taking her own decisions. From the evidence on record, it cannot be said that she was not in touch with people residing outside the four walls of her house.

“She was not a poor illiterate hapless woman. Considering the social status of the deceased, it would be difficult to come to the conclusion that the appellant was in a dominant position qua her,” the bench said.

One almost visualizes a judge overwhelmed with pity for the man unjustly punished because a woman chose to get herself killed at his hand. Not to mention the macabre “tu hain meri Kiran” type logic, where the judge describes classic violent domestic abusive behavior – extreme violence followed by remorse – as

“deeply in love” with the victim, was “possessive” about her and the murder was “a result of this possessiveness” as well as his suspicions about her fidelity.

The supposed logic being that wept when shown his wife’s body. Well, given that he had screwed up his own life, of course he wept!

A person who shoots his own wife dead cannot be considered to be in love with her by any leap of logic. It is plain controlling behavior, where [fear of] losing control over a possession brings about extreme violence and the tendency to destroy the “possession”.

This is the logic that has fathers beheading their beloved daughters over honor on one hand and marrying rape victims to their rapists on the other – destroying, discarding them without being obvious about it. This is the logic that has men throwing acid into the faces of women who dared refuse their romantic/sexual overtures. And this apparently is the logic that drives Supreme Court judges to explain how the person who murdered another wasn’t actually dominant.

I think what the Indian judicial system really needs is a means to enforce punishments post mortem. Then we could have this woman serve for the grief she caused this man by causing him to suspect her  and ruin his life in a moment of rage she induced.

What Indian women need is to flock to embassies and apply for asylum – ideally in Nordic states – since they are not safe from the system in this country, let alone the abundant criminals the system is supposed to protect them from.

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