In a rare occurrence, a book has certainly impacted the life of two human beings, Rajesh and Nupur Talwar. The couple had been sentenced to life imprisonment by a special Central Bureau of Investigation court in Ghaziabad in 2013 for the alleged murder of their teenage daughter Aarushi and a household retainer. They had appealed in the high court, which in early October 2017 acquitted them of the double murder, giving them the benefit of doubt after nearly ten years.
Avirook Sen, the author of the book based on the 2008 murder of Aarushi Talwar, has welcomed the Allahabad High Court judgement acquitting her parents, saying the wrong done by the CBI has been corrected.
Two years ago, in a interview to Book Link, Avirook had said: I think the ‘truth’ is increasingly becoming whatever it is that we would ‘like’ to believe. I find this worrying. But in the context of one of the institutions that is supposed to help us arrive at the truth, I have expressed a thought in Aarushi,… ‘The whole truth is a luxury...’ (Bottom of pg 222). That sums up what I think.
The High Court Judgement is well ‘thought through and diligent’ Avirook told news agencies. The conclusion was legally awaited by the Talwars and they finally got justice, he said, adding, ‘they have spent nearly a decade under this cloud and have finally been acquitted’. About Aarushi’s parents, he said: I remember the couple’s life as a life mainly of pressure and sadness.
Among many telling condemnation of the trial court judgement, the book noted that continuing with the line of many ‘misjudgements’ and ‘misunderstandings’ on the basis of which the case was established, is the equally baffling case of Hemraj’s blood-soaked purple pillow cover. The HC judgement specially mentioned this.
It pointed out: Bharti Mandal, the house help who worked for the Talwars, gave her first statement to the effect that the door was locked and ‘I never touched the door’. That, later, her version changed to ‘I tried to open the door but the door did not open’, peppered by, ‘I am saying what I have been taught to say’.
The book revealed that KK Gautam, the UP police officer who was involved with the case, on being asked if there was any pressure on him, had replied, ‘It is best we do not discuss this…’
Dr Dahiya’s insinuation that Hemraj and Aarushi were involved in a sexual intercourse (not rape, as the later post mortem suggests) is unbecoming of the legal system and the media to not raise any hue and cry over how this was a confident assertion without any evidence, the author asked.
The most astonishing and infuriating information that the book uncovered is that the verdict in the case was written a month prior to the actual announcement of the sentence on the Talwars, even before the defence could conclude its argument.