The villagers of Ghamroj have come together to collect the money that would pay the surety bond of Rs 50,000 for Ashok Kumar, the conductor accused in Pradyuman Thakur murder. They had collected about Rs 2 lakh rupees to help Ashok come out of the jail.
On 7 November, the Central Bureau Of Investigation (CBI) had arrested a Class XI student of Ryan International School, Gurgaon from his home in Sohna for murdering 7-year-old Pradyuman.
The dead body of Pradyuman was found inside the toilet of the school on September 8. Earlier, the police had arrested a 42-year-old bus conductor associated with the school for the murder, alleging that he tried to sexually assault the 7-year-old.
Members of the Bar Association of Sohna and Gurgaon refused to appear on behalf of Kumar.
All this while, the conductor’s family maintained that he was being framed. His wife said that had he was beaten up and given an injection. The child’s parents also echo the same views as Kumar’s wife, they say he’s being framed.
Relief for the wrongly accused
Ashok was granted bail by the Gurgaon Court on 21 November. He walked out of Bondsi jail on the evening of 22 November as jail legal procedures were completed in the afternoon. Ashok’s lawyer Mohit Verma confirmed this.
Due to lack of funds, Ashok was unable to pay for his surety bond. But the villagers decided to donate money as per their capabilities.
Mahesh Raghav, a neighbour of Ashok in Ghamroj village, sold his registry papers to help him get out of the jail. Speaking to India Today, he reportedly said, “As a neighbour, I must help him in this situation. And not only me, everyone from the village is helping Ashok by donating Rs 50-100 or whatever amount they can give.”
During the bail hearing, the CBI said that due to lack of incriminating evidence, Ashok was allowed to walk out free. CBI also claimed that during interrogation, Ashok and the gardener gave statements that they have faced severe custodial atrocities at the hands of the Haryana police to make them confess to killing Pradyuman.
Ashok’s father Ami Chand, who is happy that his son is returning, said that it is because that they are poor that they had to encounter so much of troubles without any fault of theirs.
The Logical Indian Take
Ashok Kumar, who was wrongfully accused of sexually assaulting and murdering, has now been granted bail. He can now walk out free. But is it sufficient for the bus conductor to be given a bail – does that help him in overcoming the stigma that Kumar and his family had been put through due to the wrongful accusation? Or the inhuman custodial atrocities that were perpetrated on him to coerce him to confess to the crime?
However, Kumar’s neighbours from the same village, in a wonderful gesture, had come together to help him. It is appreciable how they had decided to donate the little they have to help bring Ashok outside.
The Logical Indian community hopes that authorities treat this case as a precedent and refrain from the wrong accusation that leads to the conviction of an innocent. Such accusations end up having repercussions on the lives of the innocent, especially if the person hails from financially backward class. The surety bond of Rs 50,000 might seem like an insignificant amount to a resourceful person. But for a person from the lower rungs of the society, this is a huge amount that might lead to swallowing up of a person’s entire life’s savings. It is always difficult for them to fight the system with their meagre resources.