Hours after all four accused in Telangana veterinarian's gang rape and murder were shot dead by police this morning, BJP's Maneka Gandhi cautioned that the incident may set a "dangerous" precedent. The police had claimed the accused were trying to escape during investigation at the spot where the woman's body was found last week.
"Jo bhi hua hai bohot bhayanak hua hai (Whatever has happened is very dangerous). You can't take law in hands. They would have been hanged anyway. If you will shoot them dead before a fair trial, then what's the point of having a court, police or a legal system," the former union women and child development minister told reporters in the parliament.
"We can pick up a gun and shoot anybody then," the 63-year-old BJP leader added.
More than a week after a young veterinarian was raped, murder and then set on fire in Telangana, all four accused in the case were shot dead earlier this morning. The police said the men were trying to escape during investigations at the spot where the woman's body was found. The four men, Mohammed Arif (26), Jollu Shiva (20), Jollu Naveen (20) and Chintakunta Chennakeshavulu (20), had been taken to the scene of the crime at 3 am for a reconstruction, the police said.
"They were killed in crossfire. They tried to snatch weapons from the guards but were shot dead," Prakash Reddy, senior police offier from Hyderabad, said, adding that the men died before any medical help could arrive.
The killing of the four accused in the rape-murder case, which triggered widespread shock and horror, has sparked mixed reactions across the nation.
Many, including the 27-year-old woman's father, backed Telangana police after the incident. "It has been 10 days to the day my daughter died. I express my gratitude towards the police and the government for this. My daughter's soul must be at peace now." Actor Rishi Kapoor, badminton player Saina Nehwal also praised the cops.
However, Congress's Karti Chidambaram said the "killings are a blot to our system". "Rape is an heinous crime. It must be dealt with strictly under the provisions of law. While I hold no brief for the alleged perpetrators of this dastardly act, "encounter" killings are a blot to our system. While I understand the urge for instant justice, this is not the way," he wrote on Twitter.