With anticipation building over the judgment to be delivered in the high-profile Daswant case, media personnel had turned up in large numbers at the mahila court in Chengalpattu. The buzz at the court premises was much more than on a normal day, as people milled about waiting for the judge to pronounce his verdict.
The fact that Daswant’s sociopathic behaviour gott him into the headlines many times in the past year, as his crime record file grew thicker, added to the drama in the court house. He is the prime accused in the murder of his mother, whom he allegedly bludgeoned to death. His last appearance in court attracted some passionate responses from those at the venue, and earned him the ire of the women in the court.
When Daswant was brought to the court premises around 11.30 a.m., the police found it difficult to take him inside the building as video cameramen and photographers jostled with each other. Subsequently, he was taken through the northern wing entrance of the building amidst tight security. After the conviction was confirmed, there was a lot of curiosity to see what punishment he would be given. When the court gave him the death sentence, there was wild jubilation at the venue, with some people even bursting crackers and raising slogans in praise of the judge, P. Velmurugan.
The father of the murdered seven-year-old girl, Babu said he was satisfied with the judgment, that justice had been done. Immediately after the sentence was delivered, he wept uncontrollably, but gathered himself to say that Daswant deserved the capital punishment as he had brutally killed his little girl. Mr. Babu said that while the judgment could not bring back his daughter, it would definitely act as a deterrent, and prevent such an incident from happening again. “We felt as if my child was with us right through, and it was she who helped us fight the case to the end,” he said.
V. Kannadasan, advocate who appeared for the complainant, said, “Though I am personally against capital punishment, I am happy now since the court delivered a judgment which was expected by the victim’s father and those who watched the case closely. I feel this judgment and punishment will send a message across that such heinous crimes will be dealt with sternly by courts.”
Sherin Bosco, founder of Nakshtra Rape Crisis Centre who assisted the victim’s father in fighting the case, said, “We have been fighting the case despite a lot of pressure from the other side. We wanted justice, and we have finally got it.”
The Chengalpattu-based advocate who appeared for Daswant through the Legal Aid Service walked away from the premises without reacting to any of the questions posed to him by the media.