Justice delayed is justice denied, and if that is the case then the 21-year-old victim of a horrific acid attack can rightly complain that justice doesn’t prevail in the city. Four months after her husband threw acid on her face while she was asleep, the police for one have not arrested the accused yet and, secondly, the charges applied against him are lenient. Police have applied sections of causing grievous hurt, instead of booking the accused on the charges of attempt to murder.
Nerul resident Mubiya Mandal, lost her eyesight and her entire face was disfigured after her husband Razzak Mandal (25), flung acid on her face in September last year, and fled. Legal experts believe that several other sections should have been applied in the case and have demanded tougher action by the police. Advocate Komal Upadhyay said, “The police should include sections 504, 506(2) and 307 (attempt to murder) in the case.”
With her face and eyes completely damaged in the attack, Mubiya’s condition is now worsening with every passing day. Doctors have told her parents that it will take years for her injuries to heal, and have also advised them that an artificial eye can be fitted, but the cost will run into lakhs of rupees. “I don’t even have money to buy medicine for her on a daily basis. Where would I get money for the replacement eye? I appeal to people to help us financially,” said Saviddna, the victim’s father.
Shyam More, official spokesperson of Dr DY Patil hospital, Navi Mumbai, where Mubiya is undergoing treatment, said, “Mubiya’s condition was critical when she was brought here. Both her eyelids are damaged. We had kept her under observation earlier, but now she is in the general ward. The attack has terrified her, and she was afraid of strangers. The hospital has provided her with financial support and will do the same in future.”
Social activists Asif Faruk and Parvez Ansari who are helping the family get financial help have vowed to seek justice for the family and victim. “We will take the matter to the highest level, if Mubiya is denied justice. We are trying to get financial help for the treatment currently,” said Faruk.
ACP Dilip Jagtap, under whose jurisdiction Nerul police station comes under, said, “If our officer is found to be negligent, then I will take necessary action against him. The accused is still absconding and we are looking for him.”
Husband from hell
Mubiya married Razzak four years ago, and the couple has a three-year-old daughter Anisha. Since Razzak was unemployed and would not look for a job, there used to be frequent fights between the couple. In 2010, she decided to separate from her husband and came to reside with her father in Sector-20, Nerul.
“Even though I lived away from him, I always feared that he would come and attack me,” said Mubiya, adding, “I am in tremendous pain. I had done nothing wrong. My life has turned upside down and I am completely devastated. I am worried about my daughter’s future.”
According to the FIR copy, which is available with MiD DAY, on September 23, while Mubiya was sleeping Razzak came to her residence and poured acid on her face. He even took her purse that was kept on table while exiting. Mubiya was rushed to the hospital and based on her statement to the police; a case was registered against Razzak under section 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons) of the IPC.
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