Let me begin by re-iterating that it has taken a lot of guts to sit here and start writing this, and before I decided to write it I told my crazy friend “I think I need to write about it”. She hugged me and said, “go ahead”.
The story is of the murder of my grandparents, reader’s discretion is advised. Please do not read further unless you are absolutely sure.
24th Nov 2011, my grandparents, 2 retired lawyers were murdered in our house in Junagadh. The news is so buried-under that I cannot even find a link to a single report. They were found lying in the hall, throats cut, by my father when he returned home. He called the police, who immediately set eyes on their first suspect, my father. I was in Pune, taking a friend to the hospital, having a massive fight with my then girlfriend when the call came. My father’s friend just said, “Dada Dadi have been murdered”. It didn’t feel good. I wasn’t sad or angry, I was just shocked. it cannot happen. How can it happen? I whispered the news to my girlfriend and sank on her shoulders. That was it, they were gone. It was over.
The next day I was in Junagadh and I hugged my father as soon as I entered the house. He lost it. He cried and cried as I looked at the people who had come to pay respect for the dead. The dead, whose bodies were still in police custody, getting mutilated for post mortem. I couldn’t cry. How could I? I had to find those who did it. I had to help the police find the culprits.
A few moments later I was speaking to the DCP, he had set his eyes on my parents. My parents didn’t share the greatest of relationship with my grand parents, but they would never murder them. I knew it. The police knew it. They just didn’t want to believe it. I sat with them, going through documents after documents, finding clues to what or who could have done this. Nothing. As days went by, the police became impatient. My dad wasn’t very logical, my mom wasn’t either. I hadn’t had time to grieve. Until one day when my dad shouted on me. I think I cried more than I had cried in my entire life. I had lost my grandparents, and it was a week later that it had dawned on me.
Days went by, nothing changed. Then. About 9 days later, the cops found them. The 2 guys who killed my grandparents. Motive was determined to be robbery, but nothing was stolen from the house. Was this a setup by police to close the case? Were they really the ones who killed my grandparents? Some of our relatives did not believe that 2 street vendors could do a heinous crime like this. They suggested there is someone behind all this, but we didn’t believe it. The murderers knew my grandfather, one of the killer’s father was a watchman back in the day for my grandfather. We never found out what really happened, but we believed the story published by police.
The story in their statement said, they came to steal valuables. But they ended up killing my grandparents because they panicked and when my grandpa tried to stop them, they attacked. My grandparents were killed in their own house, by 2 cowards who wanted to make money quickly. Maybe it was a false story. Maybe they were hired by someone for the job. I do not know. But one thing was for sure, they did it. I could see it in their eyes when I saw them later that day. No remorse, no fear, no feelings. They didn’t care.
But I did. I cared. The moment I saw them, I had forgiven them. I don’t know why. I am sure my grandpa would have wanted me to forgive them. I did. It’s not spiritual. It’s my nature. They will pay for their crime, I had thought. I don’t need to be making them pay, I should not wanting them to pay. Did they pay?
5 and a half years later, they walked free. The court did not find enough evidence to convict them. I heard my mother’s voice crack as she delivered the news to me. I couldn’t get angry. A few months ago I stood in that courtroom and saw the witnesses changing their statement. I stood there in the box and got grilled by the defence lawyer. I stood there knowing these culprits will walk free one day. I knew it. It didn’t surprise me. The justice system is what it is.
So what happens now? Was it really a conspiracy to kill my grandparents? Did someone hire goons to do the job? If yes, are my parents in danger? There are many questions running in our minds. And hopefully soon enough we will make peace with it. But, I will not forget this. I may have forgiven those killers, but I will not forget the incident. And I am writing this so that you don’t forget something.
Never forget that life is short and unpredictable. You will lose someone in the blink of an eye, and won’t be able to do anything. Live your life like you have no regrets. Tell the people you love them. Talk to them, be honest. Be safe. Do not let strangers in. Keep a watch. Be vigilant. It’s not hard.
I hope my grandparents are proud of me. They weren’t the best people, but they were enough to learn a lot from. I don’t know though how much my “Jobless”ness they would have appreciated.