Wednesday, December 08, 2021

Juvenile ‘cannibal’: Treat him as adult or hand him over to us, he can’t be free after killing my son, says victim’s father

On Thursday evening, when the police team landed at their place to arrest the boy, he first denied doing anything.

Written by Divya Goyal | Ludhiana |
January 22, 2017 4:45:46 am
ludhiana, ludhiana murder, juvenile murderer, cannibal murder, india news Sangeeta, mother of the victim, in Ludhiana. Gurmeet Singh

With more details of the gruesome murder of eight-year-old boy allegedly killed by a juvenile surfacing, the victim’s father Saturday demanded that the crime be considered as “heinous and rarest of rare” and the suspect be treated as an adult.

Sangeeta, mother of Deepu, the victim, has not yet been told the bone-chilling details of the murder of her son. Police say the suspect has confessed to having extracted Deepu’s heart out after strangling him to death and dumping it in a school compound. The suspect has also confessed that he drank blood spilled on the ground after killing the boy and eating flesh.

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Deepu was the second of the four children of a migrant couple, Dilip Kumar and Sangeeta, living in the ‘vehda’ (rented rooms in a slum). The suspect too lived just a few metres away. It is near his home that Deepu’s body, cut into six pieces, was found in a sack on a vacant plot Tuesday.

Speaking to The Indian Express at their rented room, an inconsolable Sangeeta says, “I work as domestic help and my husband is daily wager. Deepu never went to school and used to take care of his infant siblings at home. Our slum has no gate and he must have moved out playing leisurely. I have been told that the arrested boy is a juvenile. But we won’t accept court’s verdict if he is set free after a few years. We want life term or death penalty for him. If he is a child, then wasn’t my son so? Who gave him the right to kill him?”

Father Dilip Kumar too said nothing less than death penalty or life term would do justice with his son. “My wife knows little details yet. I haven’t told her about the missing heart in the body. During cremation, the police did not let us go near the body fearing she might faint. I have cremated my son without even seeing his face. Police say the suspect is a juvenile. Does being a juvenile give him right to kill a child? If court fails to deliver justice and lets him free after a few years, we will not accept it. In fact, if they can’t do anything more than giving punishment of few years, they should hand him over to us. Treat him as an adult or give him to us,” said Dilip.

Meanwhile, the residence of the 16-year-old suspect arrested in the case was locked when The Indian Express team visited there. Their neighbour told that the boy lived with parents. His brother and sister are married.

“They live on rent and family hardly communicated with anyone. They are migrants from UP. Despite poor financial condition, the father was sending the boy to a private school. His mother worked as domestic help in homes to help her husband financially. Often, the boy was scolded by father for not taking studies seriously. He would roam around with schoolbag in street to avoid going school,” said an elderly neighbour.

On Thursday evening, when the police team landed at their place to arrest the boy, he first denied doing anything. “First, the police gave him a few punches and then his own parents also started beating him. Then, he confessed that he had killed the boy. He also went inside and gave police the blood soaked shirt of the boy he had hidden inside,” said a source.

Sub-inspector Jatinder Singh, the investigating officer in the case, said, “The boy’s parents said he liked eating raw meat. He also had craving for human flesh. He has confessed to drinking boy’s blood. He also said he was influenced by crime shows on television and watched them regularly.”

With the Juvenile Justice Act amended last year following the December 16 gangrape in Delhi, police said now it depended on court to treat this suspect as adult or juvenile. Earlier, maximum punishment for juveniles was three years in a juvenile home.

“We will present the case in the best possible way to get maximum punishment. Rest is on the court,” said DCP (investigation) Bhupinder Sidhu.

H S Phoolka, senior Supreme Court lawyer, said, “With amendment in the act, now court can treat such suspects as adults. Quantum of punishment depends on nature and gravity of crime.”

The suspect was also allegedly involved in burglary at a shrine and also attempted to defame his school by making hoax calls following which the management has expelled him from the institution two months ago.

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