New Delhi: Taking a cue from the Supreme
Court which favoured death sentence to those found guilty of
dishonour killings, a Delhi court, in the first such case, has
awarded capital punishment to three members of a family
including the husband for killing his wife who demanded
transfer of a piece of land in the name of her children.
Justifying the extreme punishment meted out to the
man, his mother and brother for killing the woman, Additional
Sessions Judge (ASJ) Dinesh Kumar Sharma said a message should
go to the society that if an innocent woman is killed in such
a brutal manner, the gallows await them.
"I consider that courts while delivering judgments and
awarding punishments are required to give a message to the
society that the mentality of certain class, that the woman is
not allowed to raise any voice, is to be changed," the ASJ
In this case, the victim Urmila was murdered by the
her husband and other relatives on October 15/16, 2007 in
front of her three children when she had demanded transfer of
a piece of land in the name of her children.
The family members lost their temper on hearing her
protest and they gave her several blows and strangulated her
in front of her children.
The court, after going through all the evidences,
found them guilty and termed the case in the category of
"rarest of rare".
"It is the right time to stamp out these barbaric,
feudal practices which are a slur on our nation. In such
cases, death penalty is necessary as a deterrent for such
outrages, uncivilized behaviour. A message should go to the
society that if an innocent woman is killed in such a brutal
manner, the gallows await them," the judge said.
"The motive was only that this helpless lady used to
ask for a certain piece of land may be for the future safety
of her children. This case also indicates towards the
mentality of a dishonour killing where if a lady raises voice in
the family, the family gets together and done her away with
death," the court said.
The court convicted and sentenced the husband Surender
Singh, his mother and brother on the basis of the eye witness
account of his three minor kids who had deposed before the
court saying that their father along with uncle and
grandmother had killed their mother.
"I am of the considered opinion that it is a case
which falls within the category of rarest of rare cases and
therefore, I award death penalty to the convicts, " the court
It added the court is required to give a message to
the society that there is a need to change the mentality of a
certain class where woman is not allowed to raise any voice.
"If such a bride is killed in such a brutal manner by
all the in-laws, together in furtherance of common intention,
what could be more brutal or diabolic. Here is not the case
where only husband get devil. Here is the case where all the
in-laws get together to finish the life of this lady without
any provocation," the judge said.
In this case the police had arrested Surender and his
mother on October 17, 2007 while his brother Narender, was
arrested on February 8, 2008.
The court noted that all three convicts had acted in
most brutal, diabolic and dastardly manner and their conduct
also indicated that there was no remorse and repentance even
after having committed the crime.
"The act of the convicts reflect extreme depravity and
the gruesome manner in which they killed the deceased and
dealt with her body," the judge said adding, it was not the
murder of a woman but it was a murder and assault on dignity
of entire womanhood.