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Parents of yet another Nirbhaya from Chhawla await justice

As the whole of India remembers the infamous December 16 Nirbhaya gang-rape, a mother sits with the photograph of her daughter in a distant Chhawla village of South-west Delhi. The girl was kidnapped from Chhawla, gang-raped in a car and mercilessly murdered in Rewari in Feb 2012, 10 months prior to Nirbhaya. Tears in the mothers eyes fail dry up as she recalls the fateful incident.

“These four years have been like four decades for us. My daughter was snatched away from me by these murderers. Though the court has pronounced death sentences to all three but I will get peace only when all of them are hanged. They have no right to live,” says the mother of the girl wiping her tears.

The girl was kidnapped from Chhawla village on February 9, 2012 while she was returning from her office in Gurgaon where she worked in an MNC. 

As she took the lane to her village along with her three friends, three boys of the area Ravi, Rahul and Vinod in an Indica car followed her and dragged her inside the car. She was gang-raped inside the car and taken to Rewari in Haryana. 

She was gang-raped again and acid was poured on her face. The girl’s ordeal was not over as her face was smashed to disfigure her identity. Hot iron rod was used to confirm her death by the three. Her body was later found and the police managed to arrest the three murderers.

In February 2014, a Delhi court pronounced death penalty to all three.

The mother breaks down as she remembers the ordeal she has gone through these years.

“I cry a lot when I see girls of her age getting married in the locality. I can only weep now. I have stopped wearing sarees now, she loved to see me in sarees and I remember her the moment I see my sarees,” says the mother barely managing to hold back her tears.

The father of the girl said: “She was my ‘son’. From a young age she started helping the family financially. Her brother and sister still cry when they remember their elder sister.

Sarwinder Kaur Baweja, the public prosecutor who fought the case for the girl recalls: “It was the most brutal gang-rape and murder I have seen in my career. The three of them subjected the girl to brutal torture before they actually murdered her.” 

Anita Gupta who runs an NGO said: “We took the family to Jantar Mantar, protested and demanded justice. The brutality involved in the murder was horrific. As we remember the Nirbhaya case, we should not forget the Chhawla case. The culprits should be hanged immediately.” 
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