New Delhi: Caste segregation is a menace which the society is struggling to eradicate.
This was observed by the Delhi High Court as it awarded exemplary punishment of 30 years for the "honour killing" of Nitish Katara in a cold-blooded manner by his lover's brother and cousin.
It also said that the offence was committed on a "misconceived belief" that "the convicts were upholding the honour of their family, caste and the community."
"The murder was not an ordinary murder. It was an honour killing which was executed with extreme vengeance. The crime was certainly not a result of emotional disturbance," the court said.
"Caste divisions are a menace which the society is struggling to eradicate. The motive evinces exceptional depravity, meanness; the crime was socially abhorrent and certainly an aggravating circumstance," a bench of justices Geeta Mittal and JR Midha observed.
It also held that the convicts did not consider Nitish's family as affluent as their own.
"The evidence on record establishes that they (convicts) had deliberated on their actions to conclude that the only way of ending the alliance between Nitish and Bharti was by eliminating him," it said.
The court also observed that the victim was "alone, unarmed, innocent and completely defenceless when he was brutally murdered".
While holding that the offence was carefully planned and premeditated, the bench said, "The murder was committed in cold blood without any provocation. It was committed because the convicts did not approve the romantic relationship between Nitish and Bharti Yadav - sister of Vikas Yadav, for the reason that Nitish did not belong to their caste."
The bench said that the motive which incited the "despicable crime" by the convicts--Vikas Yadav, Vishal Yadav and Sukhdev Pehalwan-- certainly expressed "exceptional depravity and meanness".