Till Death Do Us Part
Till Death Do Us Part9 mins 200 9 mins 200
Zaura jail, only women jail in the whole northern precinct, packed with killers, looters, con women, and drug peddlers.
Female inmates with death penalties were in the south block of the jail, perfectly in isolation far from the other blocks for the jail; they were two in all, confined in single cells for the death row inmates awaiting the verdicts on their rapidly filed appeals in various courts. Their lawyers were busy like hell, filing one appeal after the other to delay the process of their hanging.
Aditi the youngest, age 26 years was awarded the death penalty for killing her live-in relationship partner Vishal in cold blood. The six by ten cells were just iron cage to tame the social animals. There was no cot, just two blankets full of bugs to spend a cold night. Aditi just saw at the full moon which was shining somewhere above in the sky but its cold rays were illuminating her cell unknowingly after all any light was forbidden in the jail at night.
This is just a matter of a few months and it will be over, I'll be united with my dear Vishal again.
Thought Aditi and try to catch some sleep, which was scarce during the cold winter nights. Rags in the name of blankets cannot warm you enough, but the body needs sleep, it catches some sleep in the adverse conditions. It was a daily routine for Aditi to wake up till four in the morning and fall asleep till the wake-up toll rose havoc at six in the morning.
"Your eyes are burning like hell, learn to catch some sleep deary otherwise these sleepless nights shall kill you long before they hang you," said Jyoti other death row inmate to Aditi at the dirty kitchen where they were serving tea and damp biscuits to other inmates.
"Makes no difference, I'm waiting for that big day," replied Aditi.
"It makes difference, you only found your apartment in fire and Vishal's body turned to ashes; it might have happened just by accident but this outrageous system wanted someone to hang and you were the easiest and dumb target for them.”
"No it was only me who used to forget turning off the cooking gas' knob often and on that very day, my mistake took the life of my Vishal. I have nothing to repent to just to let this long-dead body end." said Aditi with a deep sigh.
Jyoti handed over her a cup of tea and started sipping herself from the other.
"It was unfortunate, don't blame yourself; you have been rotting in this jail for five years that is enough; I pray God that Supreme Court will consider your parents plea to convert your death sentence to life imprisonment," said Jyoti looking at the rest of life imprisonment inmates, who were having their quota of tea and biscuits and chirping like birds.
"I don't want to rot all the life in memory of Vishal, let this drama of appeal over appeal should over soon. Forget about me, you desperately want to get out of this jail; what about your appeals?"
"I'm a woman from slum and killed my second husband for molesting my ten years old daughter from my first marriage. I have no regrets; I did what I had to."
"But you didn't even think of that poor girls' future, who would be looking after now. Don't you think this world is full of male hyenas looking for easy prey."
"I know, I did what I had to, now its God almighty turn to look after her."
"Do you still have faith in God?"
"I don't know, but what could I do except praying to Him for her."
"Does your poor brother have enough money to file an appeal in Supreme Court?"
"No, but I hope lower court will withdraw my death sentence."
"What is the gain?"
"If the lower court turns my death sentence to life imprisonment, I'll have an opportunity to go out of this jail on parole."
"Very optimistic," said Aditi and turned to sink were a number of dirty cups were waiting for them and others to clean them.
Jailor Sunil Daga was going through the mail heap, pending for three days. Running a woman jail is really a very challenging job in this area. Amnesty International and other human rights NGOs are the watchdog of these jails. The animals residing inside the cells must be treated like humans, well fed and well kept with the help of meager funds which the government provides to run this big circus. Ministers and politicians who pay frequent visits to jail want five-star treatment, no matter how tight your funds are you need to treat these Khadi clad gods properly otherwise your next transfer will be in naxlite infected area, where you need to pay security money to those loafers to keep your head intact.
The mail was ordinary junk but two fat envelops were about the two death row inmates. Jyoti’s death sentence was turned to life imprisonment whereas Aditi's death sentence was confirmed by the Supreme Court. Now her lawyers shall start playing another term of appeal over the appeal. I hate this drama; these animals must be executed as soon as possible.
He called deputy jailor Rao Khalid to check if the executioner Relu Ram was still alive and ordered him to bring that man to the jail as soon as possible as he knew after the Supreme Court's rejection, they normally give one month to execute the death row inmates. In the meantime, the president will decide her plea, which will be against her as usual.
An Immortal Bond
"Please refrain from this drug trade, whatever we earn is enough for us to live a peaceful life," said Aditi to his prince charming Vishal Dava; a 23 years old tall and dark guy.
"Darling, I don't take any drug, I'm clean and honestly I'll get myself out of this trade very soon," replied Vishal.
"Sometimes I'm very afraid of your partners; I heard they are ruthless people; they don't easily let anyone ditch them."
"Don't worry I have a full-proof plan, we'll leave India silently and settle in the States, I have enough money to live there peacefully for a long time."
"States, why, I have a family and my responsibilities towards them."
"Don't worry, the drug people won't be able to track me, they shall give up sooner or later then we'll come back to India to live here forever."
"I don't know, my parents are old, they need me, they need me during their old age, you know they don't have a son; I'm their son, daughter, everything."
"I understand sweetie, we'll handle this matter; now don't worry and serve the dinner."
"Oh my God, I left the gas stove on……"
"Run sweetheart, I'm afraid, you'll set this flat on fire someday."
"Don't worry we'll die together……."
"Yes, my love till death do us part……" said Vishal patting her tender face.
That was the last conversation which she had with Vishal, next morning while going to her college where she was working as an associate professor; she made lunch for herself and breakfast for Vishal. The moment she left her flat Vishal was in deep sleep, she kissed him and left hurriedly as Dr. Mahip, head of the Department of Chemistry, wanted her to attend his classes for no reason.
I must have left the gas stove on and took the life of my Vishal.
04:00 A. M.
The black warrant was served yesterday evening the hanging time was 04:30 in the morning. Her blubbering of giving her life for Vishal has vanished, she was afraid of death now, she wanted her advocates to file another appeal to buy her some more time, but her last appeal was rejected by a special bench of judges.
Want anything special to eat Miss Aditi was a question from the jailor which she declined politely.
Her parents in their fifties came to pay her a visit day before yesterday, they looking older their own age. Now they must be outside the jail waiting to collect her body.
All alike every night sleep was far but peace of her mind was also far from her. She knows there is life after death, but what could she do, the system failed her and held her responsible for the death of Vishal and didn't let her go until the system earned the death penalty for her.
By 03:30 A. M. jail nurses made her take a bath and a priest recited Geeta, she was numb, listening nothing. A plate of food was brought which she didn't touch; they offered her tea which she declined as well.
"Time to go Miss Aditi." said the jailor who was in a hurry to hang her and catch some sleep if possible.
As a rule, both her hands were tied behind. And two powerful sentries held her from her both arms and started dragging her towards the hanging podium. The hanging podium was ready and the executioner was ready. The sentries made her stand on the podium and tied her feet with another rope. She has lost every sense by then and was half awake.
The jailor looked at his watch and gave a signal to start the hanging.
Hum to hukum ke ghulam hai, hume maaf kijiye ga;
Hindu ko ram-ram Muslim ko salaam,
Hum to hai hukum ke ghulam
(I'm just a slave of the orders, please forgive me. Ram-Ram to Hindus, Salam to Muslims. I'm just a slave of the orders)
Hangman Relu Ram mouthed these lines before putting a black hood on the head of Aditi.
"Next, he held the iron lever and wait for the signal from the jailor. When he gave the signal, he pulled the lever.
"So they finally hanged her." asked the blond to bearded Vishal.
"It wasn't so easy Sandra, the judges squeezed a big chunk of money from me to award her death penalty. There was no case; her lawyer was almost successful to prove the incidence as an accident," replied Vishal.
"She was your lover, why were you so ruthless to her?"
"I really loved her but she was my only instrument to escape from the drug world. Drug mafia doesn't believe such mishaps, they must have held her if she came out of jail unpunished and made her talk about my eviction plans. Her death was necessary for my own safety."
"I don't understand you; will you do the same with me if I became a menace to you?"
"Who knows? What is this pungent smell? Asked Vishal with a lot of concern.
"I recon gas line is leaked, gas company people are useless in this area."
"Let's get out of this gas infected house," said Vishal and ran outside leaving the blond behind.
But a powerful fire blast took the wooden house in its grip. Another powerful blast scattered Vishal's body parts in the air.