As soon as Godfrey Pimenta, an advocate and social activist, heard the news of the Delhi gang rape victim’s death, he took down all the Christmas and new year decorations in his house and decided to go on a fast. He also called around eight neighbours and held a prayer meeting for the deceased girl and her family.
Pimenta, a Marol resident said that he was disturbed by the news. “A budding life was taken away in a brutal manner. She did not deserve to die. This is our way of empathising with the family and praying for her soul.” Godfrey and his daughters Cypriana, Ginelle and wife Clarissa observed the fast. “I have two young college-going daughters and I cannot imagine what the family is going through. This is the time to bring about a change.”
Pimenta added that the disappointment also stemmed from his lack of faith in the law. “I’m an advocate but I’m very apprehensive about the legal system which is full of loopholes. We have ten thousand laws in the country, many of which are archaic and others not strictly enforced. None of the prevailing laws instill fears among criminals because in most cases, they will be let off with a penalty. So people know they can get away.” Pimenta also said that the delivery of justice is so delayed and pathetic that there is no respect for the legal system. “We always give knee-jerk reactions. There are promises, debates and discussions but then, we’re back to square one. The law should be transformed such that it is stricter and there’s better judicial infrastructure.”