Free Press Journal

‘Acid attack more heinous than rape’ – Justice Anju Shende


Mumbai : While awarding death sentence to Ankur Panwar, special Judge Anju Shende observed: “A girl would be scared of moving around if anyone can just come and throw acid on her face and destroy her.”

“The height of brutality in acid attack cases is more than that in a rape case. Rape destroys the very soul of the victim but she can live safely at any place without disclosing her identity,” the court held, adding, “In such cases (acid attack), a girl has to move around with their (defaced) bodies.”

The special judge upheld the prosecution’s view and agreed that Panwar is a ‘sadist’ and that, in no manner, he can be reformed. She further observed that this case was not one of unrequited love; rather the convict wanted to possess her and on not getting any response, he destroyed her.

The special judge also pointed out that though the victim survived for around 30 days, she had no idea how she looked as she had lost her vision due to the acid attack.

Interestingly, the special judge also took into account the quantity of the sulphuric acid — 2 kg of it — which was purchased by Panwar.

“Sulphuric acid is so powerful that it affects even bones; the quantity of acid purchased by the convict for hurling on such a small surface, that is the face of the victim, shows that there was an intention to kill her,” the court observed.

The special court, in awarding death sentence to Panwar, also took into account the statements of the eyewitnesses and the fact that he was unable to explain the marks of acid on his own hand.