Real vs Reel: Is Netflix's Delhi Crime a true story based on the gruesome Nirbhaya rape case?

For the unversed, Netflix's Delhi Crime is based on the 2012 police investigation of the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old woman and the beating of her male friend.

Real vs Reel: Is Netflix's Delhi Crime a true story based on the gruesome Nirbhaya rape case? -
Released on 22nd March 2019, Netflix's Delhi Crime took the OTT platform by storm and narrated one of the most infamous rape cases in recent history that jolted the National Capital of India and the nation. Delhi Crime Season 1 was released on Netflix with viewers could watch it on the OTT platform in 7 episodes. Delhi Crime showcased how a gruesome gang-rape case united New Delhi and forced the government and the Police to prioritize women's safety in India. For the unversed, Netflix's Delhi Crime is based on the 2012 police investigation of the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old woman and the beating of her male friend.

Is Delhi Crime a real-life story?

As mentioned above, Netflix's Delhi Crime is a real-life story that revolves around the 2012 police investigation of the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old woman and the beating of her male friend also known as the Nirbhaya Rape Case. 

Coming to Delhi Crime True Story, here is how the case unfolded in reality-

On December 16, 2012, medical student and her friend were heading home after seeing a movie. They boarded a bus that was reportedly off-duty, although it already had five other passengers plus the driver. The victim and her male friend board a bus from Delhi's Munerka bus stand. Following that six men, including a juvenile, thrashed the male friend and gang-raped the victim on the moving bus before throwing both of them out near Aerocity.


The boy was mercilessly beaten by an iron rod and was left unconscious. Following that, the girl was dragged on the back of the bus and beaten with the same iron rod while being sexually assaulted by those on board. The barbarism in the Nirbhaya Rape case had even shocked the Delhi Police as the accused inserted an iron rod inside the genitals of the victim. The crime was so gruesome that Nirbhaya fought for life for more than 10 days, however, she succumbed to her injuries on December 29. 

Amidst this, all the six accused were arrested by the Delhi Police after a manhunt including a juvenile. One of the suspects in the Nirbhaya Rape case committed suicide in Tihar Jail. While another accused was sent to a correction home for three years by Juvenile Justice Board (JJB). 

In 2020, death sentences were handed out to the remaining four accused in the infamous Nirbhaya case. 

Coming back to Netflix's Delhi Crime, the web series focuses much more on the investigation and police than the brutal events on the bus. Reportedly, Director Richie Mehta was initially against the idea of dramatizing this event but was “amazed” by the manhunt. Bollywood actress Shefali Shah did an outstanding job with her performance in the Delhi Crime.

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