Shiva Kumar, the impersonating cab driver who raped and murdered BPO employee Pratibha Murthy about five years ago has been sentenced to life imprisonment by a Bangalore court.
The victim’s mother, a desolate old woman who has attended every hearing in the last five years in the ‘fast track’ (!) court, and want’s the culprit hanged, is disappointed.
Watching this old lady lisp her broken English to avid TV reporters makes me want to cry.
The public prosecutor of the case says that his argument that this was the rarest of rare cases has been accepted.
He is at pains to emphasise that ‘life term’ is this case means exactly that (imprisonment till the last breath – one hopes that it is not interpreted as the last breath of the judge!) and not 14 years.
India’s problem is exactly that…so many things that mean one thing for common folk really mean something else for those in power.
For example, India’s people believe that they are citizens….the ruling class knows they are just ‘shit’izens.
To the common folk, prison means something terrible. To the politicians, their kith and kin and to their closest relatives, the goondas, it means something terrific.
A place from where you can go on parole to five star hotels, spas and the like.
To the common folk, taxes are what they pay through their noses. To the politicians taxes are what citizens, sorry shitizens, pay for their wellbeing.
To the common folk, bank means IOB or SBI or Citi or Axis…but to the politicians bank means Swiss bank.
There is the story of the politician’s son – also an aspiring politician – who told his mother that he would return after a visit to the bank.
The woman who was waiting got a call the next day from Switzerland.
He was saying that the Swiss scenery was beautiful. Well, with the sort of money he has stashed up, an Indian slum will look better than Rashtrapati Bhavan….which…after all, is the home of another Pratibha.
See….even proper names have two meanings in India.