A non-governmental organisation related to prison reforms, has urged Delhi’s Tihar jail authorities to allow it to read out “Garuda Purana”, a holy scripture which talks of the soul’s journey after death, to four convicts before their hanging.
NGO Rashtriya Yuva Shaki has written to the authorities in order to reduce the convicts’ suffering and help them attain salvation after death, reported Hindu daily Amar Ujala.
The scripture is usually read out by a priest for a few days after the death of a Hindu.
Less Painful Death for the ‘Heinous’ Crime
The letter also stated that the recital will also help the convicted to mentally prepare themselves before death.
The organisation’s President Pradeep Raghunandan wrote to senior official of Tihar jail Digvijay Sanjeev Goyal, explaining that as all the judicial proceeding are almost over and the death of culprits is certain, an attempt should be made to help them die a less painful death.
Raghunandan believes that according to Hindu mythology, the recital of the Garuda Puran will enable them to have a better afterlife. And it should be allowed on humanitarian grounds.
Garuda Purana is one of the 18 manuscripts of Hindu religion. It is a narration between the Hindu god Vishnu and a bird called Garuda, explaining what happens after death. The scripture was written in Sanskrit by the greatest author of religious books Ved Vyas in the first millennium BCE. The narration took place, according to Hindu mythology, when King Parikshit fund himself mentally unready to die.
‘Heinous’ Gangrape of Nirbhaya
On 16 December, 2012, the paramedic student Nirbhaya was brutally gang-raped and left grievously injured by six men in a moving bus in south Delhi. She ultimately died in a Singapore hospital.
The Supreme Court described the brutality of the crime committed against the girl as “humanly inconceivable” and most “heinous”.
Six men were convicted in the case. While convict Ram Singh, the main accused and driver of the bus hung himself in prison, one of the accused was a minor and was sentenced to three years in a reform facility. The other four were handed the death sentence by a Delhi Sessions Court and will be executed on 22 January.
Two of them Vinay Kumar Sharma and Mukesh Singh have filed clemency pleas and the court will rule on those on 14 January.