Three of the six men accused of the brutal gang rape of 23-year-old Indian student Jyoti Singh Pandey will plead not guilty, owing to “lapses in the police investigation,” according to their lawyer Manohar Lal Sharma. The men stand accused of murder, rape and abduction (among other charges), while the sixth claims to be under 18, though that has yet to be confirmed. Sharma, a Supreme Court lawyer for the last twenty years, volunteered to represent four of the five adults.
As for those lapses, Sharma claims that in the rush to investigate amid the massive public outcry, the police have bungled the case. He’s also indicated that his clients are traumatized by the ordeal saying, for example, that bus driver Ram Singh is “struggling to communicate and fluctuating between crying and laughing.”
Sharma went on to say Pandey’s male companion (with whom she entered the bus) was “wholly responsible” for the incident. Apparently owing to the fact that “the unmarried couple should not have been on the streets at night.”
Predictably, it gets much worse. He said:
“Until today I have not seen a single incident or example of rape with a respected lady. Even an underworld don would not like to touch a girl with respect.”
It’s not even clear what his point is.
As for Pandey’s advocates, he insisted they are “just seeking revenge. They are not seeking justice. A defendant has a right to a lawyer, this is a basic principle of a modern society.”
And, via Jezebel, Reuters has an absolutely devastating breakdown of other horrible things about rape and rape survivors said by notable Indians in light of the case, if you’re interested in becoming blind with rage. Apparently future brutal sexual assaults can be prevented by 1) the tried-and-true mini skirt ban, 2) girls wearing more overcoats, 3) a ban on nudity and 4) other stuff that has nothing to do with sexual assault.
Further, rather than blaming any rapists, the horrific incident can instead by attributed to 1) stars being in “adverse positions,” and 2) consumption of fast food.
(Sydney Morning Herald, photo via Wenn)