New Delhi, Nov 27 (IBNS) Aarushi-Hemraj murder convict Rajesh Talwar's brother Dinesh Talwar has said there has been a miscarriage of justice in the case.
Speaking to CNN-IBN Deputy Editor Sagarika Ghose on Face The People, Dinesh said: "All I can say is that for whatever reason, the prosecution´s arguments seem to have been heard. As far as I am concerned there has been a miscarriage of judgement."
"The evidence that I see at least convinces me that my brother is innocent. As far as we are concerned there is enough evidence to merit going for an appeal. I believe and the family believes there has been a miscarriage of justice," he said.
In a judgement that divided public opinion sharply, a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court judge on Tuesday sentenced dentist couple Rajesh and Nupur Talwar for life in connection with the mysterious May 2008 murder of their teenaged daughterAarushi and domestic help Hemraj.
Special CBI Judge Shyam Lal awarded life imprisonment to the couple under Section 302 (murder) and five-year term under Section 201 (destruction of evidence). Rajesh Talwar also got one-year jail under Section 203 (false information).
Besides these, they have been fined Rs 10,000 each under Section 302 failing which they will have to undergo an extra 6 months in jail. The duo will also have to pay Rs 5,000 as fine under Section 201 else will get 3 months in jail. Rajesh who has been also convicted under Section 203 for filing a wrong FIR will also have to pay Rs 2,000 as fine.
The judge said in his order: "Keeping in view the entire facts and circumstances, I am of the view that both the accused are not menace to the orderly society, this is not a fit case for inflicting death penalty under section 302 read with section 34 I.P.C. and, therefore, it appears just and proper to sentence the accused to rigoures imprisonment for life under section 302 read with section 34 I.P.C. with a fine of Rs.10,000/- each, to 5 years rigoures imprisonment with a fine of Rs.5,000/-each under section 201 read with section 34 I.P.C."
"It also appears expedient in the interest of justice to sentence the accused accused Dr. Rajesh Talwar under section 203 I.P.C. to simple imprisonment of one year with a fine of Rs. 2,000/-," said the judge.
The verdict read: "To perorate, it is proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused are the perpetrators of the crime in question. The parents are the best protectors of their own children- that is the order of human nature but there have been freaks in the history of mankind when the father and mother became the killer of their own progeny. They have extirpated their own daughter who had hardly seen 14 summers of her life and the servant without compunction from terrestrial terrain in breach of Commandment ´Thou shall not kill´ and injunction of Holy Quran- ´Take not life, which God has made sacred´."
"They are also found guilty of secreting and obliterating the evidence of the commission of the murders to screen themselves from legal punishment. In addition to that Dr. Rajesh Talwar is also found guilty of furnishing false information to the police regarding the murder of his daughter by Hemraj.i.e. if we protect ´Dharma´, Dharma will protect us. If we protect ´Law´, law will protect us. Both the accused have flouted the ferocious penal law of the land and therefore, liable to be convicted under sections ....."
The Talwars said they would move the higher court. At present the couple is lodged in Dasna jail.
Rebecca John, lawyer of the Talwars, slammed the judgement and called it grotesque misuse of power.
She said the Talwars would move (Allahabad) High Court as soon as possible.
The court on Monday convicted Rajesh Talwar and Nupur Talwar in the case.
Teenager Aarushi Talwar was found dead, with her throat slit, at the Talwar residence in Noida in the morning of May 16, 2008. The body of Hemraj, Talwars´ domestic help, was found on the terrace the next day though police first thought that the murder was committed by Hemraj.
Investigators had earlier said that girl was killed perhaps by her parents in a fit of anger after they found her in an objectionable position with their domestic help Hemraj.
The case had since spiralled into one of the country´s biggest unsolved cases, with a prolonged investigation marked by admissions of lack of evidence and dramatic twists.
Nupur and Rajesh Talwar maintained that they were innocent, and were being framed by the CBI since the agency had not been able to track down the real killers.
As the sentencing was pronounced, the most media spotlighted news triggered sharp division in public opinion with many hinting the verdict as a miscarriage of justice since the entire case was based on circumstantial evidence.
Reacting to the court´s judgement, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeted: "Arushi Talwar case is going to be our ´grassy knoll´. We have a guilty verdict but I wonder if we will ever know what really happened."
Actor Anupam Kher said: "Somewhere in my heart there is immense sadness. Difficult to describe. But I am Sad. #AarushiVerdict."
Most TV channels ran special panel discussions on the merits of the verdict and questioned the process of trial. Opinion polls by channels also found majority of viewers saying the Talwars were witch-hunted.
In what was dubbed an unresolved murder mystery by the own admission of investigators, the duo was convicted under Indian Penal Code sections 302 (murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence), 203 (giving false information), and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention).
The judgement was given based on circumstantial evidence after the CBI probing the case failed to crack it by gathering any solid evidence but concluded that the murderers could only be the girl´s parents.
At around 3-25 pm on Monday, the verdict was passed by the special CBI judge Shyam Lal in the Ghaziabad Sessions Court.
They were in tears, said the lawyer. The couple were taken to Dasna jail later.
Soon after the verdict the Talwars issued a statement.
"We are deeply disappointed, hurt and anguished over the conviction. We refuse to feel disappointed and will continue to fight for justice," said the couple.