Sixty-eight-year old Ram Bai reached Delhiʼs Tihar Jail at around 4.30 pm on 19 March, expecting to meet her son, Mukesh, for the last time. Less than two hours earlier, a Delhi court had refused to stay the execution of her son. He is scheduled to be hanged at 5.30 am on 20 March.
Ram Bai, a frail old woman of less than five feet, seemed crushed by the finality of the decision. She was sobbing. “It's just that I had hoped for so long, so long,” she said, as tears streamed down her cheeks, and fell on the frayed shawl wrapped around her. “What will they get by killing him, tell me? What will they get? They took away my other son, my husband … Now what will they get by taking him away too?”