Ever since the two verdicts on appeals against the court verdicts on the Bilkis Bano case (Gujarat riots, life sentence to all those accused of gang-rapes and murder) and the Nirbhaya rape case (Delhi rape case, death to all except the juvenile culprit) have been pronounced by courts, there are a lot of tweets and posts on social media where Muslims see the difference as a sign of discrimination based on religion.
Bilkis Bano has not been denied justice, certainly not for being a Muslim.
बिलकिस बानो को न्याय मिला है| भारत के न्यायालय अभी तक दुरूस्त है| बिलकिस बानो के दोषियों को प्राण दंड देना उचित नहीं क्योंकि पूरे अपराध की एकमात्र गवाह खुद बानो है|
The case of Bilkis Bano and the Nirbhaya/Delhi rape case are not the same, except for both being blots on humanity.
I have not studied law, but had the privileged access to a private library of a lawyer. However, my opinion is that of a layman with a curiosity to understand the society around us.
Those seeking death penalty in Bilkis Bano case must read the 430-page Bombay High Court verdict before terming the life imprisonment as lenient.
The sole evidence of the crime in the case of Bilkis Bano is the victim herself. No other evidence. In a case that relies solely on the testimony of the victim, awarding life imprisonment is the best judgement.
Bilkis Bano does not deserve any less of justice than anyone else in the country. Those who think she has been denied justice for being a Muslim are simply mistaken or driven by the desire to avenge the crime.
Justice is not revenge. Howsoever aggrieved, you cannot ask for more than what the general law of the land prescribes.
In Delhi / Nirbhaya rape, there were supporting evidences too. The death penalty could have been justified by evidences. A court should not, and cannot, award death sentence to please the conscience of the society. Also, the original verdict in Bilkis Bano case was delivered long before the Delhi rape case verdict that referred to the argument of collective conscience. Even in that case, the juvenile was awarded a punishment only in accordance with the law.
Whether you like it or not, there is a written law for the land. Even in the current tumultuous time, the Indian judiciary does not discriminate between a Hindu and a Muslim. Please put down your lenses that embosses a religion stamp on everything. As long as you stand for the nation called India, and not for some religious brotherhood or fraternity, you will find a majority of the country on your side.