The Gujarat government on Monday responded in the Supreme Court regarding the decision to release 11 convicts in the Bilkis Bano gang rape case. The BJP government has said in the affidavit that the 14-year sentence of the convicts was completed. It has been decided to release them ‘in view of their good behaviour’. The affidavit also stated that the Union Home Ministry had approved the release. On August 15, when Prime Minister Modi was talking about women’s empowerment from the Red Fort, a few hours later the gangrape convicts were released from the jail.
A few days later, Bano demanded from the Gujarat government that these culprits should be sent back to jail and she should be given the right to live peacefully in the society without any fear. Let us tell you that when Bilkis Bano was raped, she was five months pregnant at that time. In 2002, after the communal riots in Godhra, Gujarat, the village of Bilkis was massacred. The culprits of this case were lodged in Godhra Upjail.
The family of Bilkis Bano lived in Randhikpur village of Limkakheda taluka of Dahod. Her family was attacked on 3 March. Bilkis Bano was gang-raped by seven people and killed several family members. After this, on January 21, 2008, the Special CBI Court in Mumbai sentenced 11 accused to life imprisonment in the murder and gangrape case.
Later the Bombay High Court also upheld the conviction of the culprits. After 15 years, one of the convicts moved the Supreme Court and demanded his release. The Gujarat government has ordered the relief of 11 convicts under the remission policy. After this, on August 15, he came out of jail.
Questions were raised on this decision of the Gujarat government all over the country. However, the government did not withdraw its decision. A BJP leader had even said that the culprits were Brahmins and had good values.