“Disappointed”. That was how Umaid Singh, Phoolan Devi’s husband, reacted to the verdict in his wife’s murder case on Friday. “The death of my wife was the biggest loss in my life. I have waited 13 years to get justice. But today, the justice system has let me down, yeh sarasar galat kiya gaya hai. But I will continue to fight for justice,” he said.
Recalling Phoolan’s struggle and her fight against upper caste domination, Singh said the judgment shows how justice for the lower caste is still a “distant dream”.
“For decades, my wife fought for the rights of the lower caste. She was victimised by the members of the upper caste during her lifetime, but even after her death she remains a victim of the caste system. Justice for people like us who belong to the lower caste will continue to remain a distant dream. Justice for my wife is a fight for justice for the members of the lower caste. Gareeb samaaj ko nyay kabhi nahi milta,” Singh said.
Criticising the investigation, he questioned how police could not crack the case. “My wife was shot at a VIP area in the national capital. It was a murder of an Member of Parliament. But in today’s judgment, only one person has been convicted. Either investigation was not carried out in the right way or I see a conspiracy against my wife,” he said.
Singh said he will move the High Court in appeal, once the quantum of the punishment is pronounced by the court. “Today the court has given out the judgment. But I will move the High Court when it sentences the convict,” he said.
“As for the acquittal of the 11 persons, I will be meeting the lawyers to decide the future course of action,” he said.