Faith in judiciary shattered: Priyadarshini's mom

Srinagar: More than 15 years after the rape and murder of law student Priyadarshini Mattoo by a stalker in the national capital, her mother today said the long wait for justice and "less" quantum of punishment for the killer had shattered her faith in the system.

"It would have been more appropriate for my husband to say this, but he now feels completely disillusioned with the judicial system and has chosen to remain silent," Rageshwari Mattoo, a retired principal, told a gathering of former jurists at a seminar here.

"We had to endure tremendous stress by following this case for 14 long years and face the unpredictability of the justice system," she said.

The seminar was organised by Priyadarshani Mattoo Memorial Foundation For Performing Arts, the trust run by the family of Priyadarshini. The theme of the seminar included,

"Is criminal justice system of India under collapse", "Are women safe in India" and "Did Priyadarshini get justice".

On January 23, 1996, 23-year-old Kashmiri girl Priyadarshini, a law student in Delhi, was raped and killed by Santosh Singh, son of a police Inspector General, leading to registration of FIR by the Delhi Police.

The case was later handed over to the CBI, which filed a charge sheet against Singh in the same year. In 2006, he was awarded death sentence by the Delhi High Court. Singh filed a plea in the Supreme Court challenging the sentence which commuted it to life term, much to the disappointment of the family.

Rageshwari said it was incumbent upon her to raise the awareness about the injustice meted out to her daughter and the crimes committed against women.