New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) plea against the release of juvenile rapist in the Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder.
The court observed that it was bound by law and hence cannot stay the release of the juvenile. The court said it had no legislative sanction in the absence of law and hence cannot issue any interim order to keep the juvenile in correction home.
"If anything has to be done, it has to be done according to the law. We have to enforce the law," a vacation bench comprising justices A K Goel and U U Lalit said while refusing to entertain the plea of Maliwal filed in her official capacity as Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) Chief.
The bench did not agree with the submission that the juvenile offender can be subjected to the reformation process for a further period of two years under the juvenile law.
"Will we not taking away somebody's right to life guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. There is nothing in the law to provide that," the bench said when the counsel for DCW cited provisions to drive home the point that the delinquent juvenile can be allowed to go through the further reformation process.
Meanwhile, DCW chairperson Swati Maliwal reacted strongly on the court decision.
“The Rajya Sabha has betrayed the women of the country as it has failed to pass the law. The court said that it shared our concerns but in the absence of law couldn’t do anything,” she said.
Nirbhaya’s parents also slammed the court’s decisions, saying now a license had been given to juveniles to rape women.
Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha will discuss juvenile justice amendment bill on Monday.
Sources in the observation home where the convict was serving out three years’ detention have told The Telegraph the now 20-year-old was shifted out at least a week ago and put in the care of a local NGO.
They said he had to spend at least the next six months with the NGO, after which the Juvenile Justice Board would review his situation. Till then, he is unlikely to be allowed to go out alone or to take up a job but his training in cooking and tailoring will continue.
“He is completely anonymous in the NGO complex, with even the staff unaware of his identity,” a source said.
He said the Juvenile Justice Board had approved the rehabilitation plan, drawn up by the observation home’s management committee and executed days before Delhi High Court on Friday refused to stay the convict’s release.