Eighteen years after she was sexually exploited, the Suryanelli victim from Kerala had finally got justice in April last year when the Kerala High Court convicted 27 out of the 31 accused who had repeatedly sexually exploited and raped her.
But the Supreme Court on Tuesday said that there were many 'points of disbelief' in the Suryanelli case. The bench headed by Justice Deepak Mishra and Justice P C Pant asked why the victim who was 16 years old then did not try to escape from her captors even once. Though the bench denied bail to all the 27 convicts, the comment made by the judges has come under condemnation.
Brinda Karat, CPI(M) Politburo member said, ‚Äėthe comments were outrageous and unfortunate‚Äô. She said, ‚ÄúThis attitude is a sad comment on the way things function in this country‚ÄĚ.
She added, ‚ÄúTo make such a comment about a minor who was repeatedly raped is to victimize the person. She has been repeatedly victimized by various courts in this country. It is a sad commentary on the case.‚ÄĚ
The Suryanelli victim‚Äôs fight for justice has been a traumatic one with many accusations levelled against her and top politicians of Kerala casting aspersions on her.
Of the 27 accused people, the main accused, advocate Dharmarajan was given life imprisonment and two other accused were sentenced to 10-year imprisonment with a fine of Rs 15,000. Fifteen others were sent to jail for a 7-year term with a fine of Rs 15,000 and seven were acquitted by the court.