A Delhi Court has today, dismissed the plea moved by Nirbhaya gangrape case convicts, seeking a stay of their execution, which is scheduled for 20 March at 5:30 AM.
The bench headed by Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana of Patiala House court while stating that the petition was ‘bereft of merits’ has further stated that ‘No valid ground has been brought to the notice to justify the stay of execution of death warrants.’
The petition contended that the convict, Akshay Singh’s second mercy plea was pending before the President and has cited it as a ground to seek stay on their death sentence. Advocate AP Singh, appearing for the convicts, submitted that a plea has been made to the International Court of Justice for intervention in execution and that another plea was filed before the Election Commission of India, alleging politicization of the case.
However, the public prosecutor informed the court that the second-round of mercy pleas by two convicts, Akshay Singh and Pawan Gupta, was not entertained and were already rejected on the ground, that the first one was entertained and considered on merit.
Subsequently, stating that the pendency of any consecutive mercy plea was not a ground to suspend the death sentence, the court referred to the 2015 judgment of the honorable apex court in the Yakub Memon case. The Court has also observed that the Delhi High Court had on 5 February directed all the convicts to exhaust their legal remedies within 7 days.
“The condemned convict cannot be permitted to frustrate the course of law by simply opting to remain indolent. Condemned convict Pawan, in stark defiance of the directions of the Hon’ble Delhi High Court, has opted not to exhaust his legal remedies. One who seeks protection of law first needs to learn to respect it. Therefore, I do not find any plausible reasons to suspend the execution of the death sentence, simply because convict Pawan has opted not to exercise his legal remedy,” stated the order.
Earlier today, the Supreme Court has dismissed a curative petition filed by convict Pawan Kumar Gupta, against its previous verdict which rejected his claim of being a juvenile, at the time of the offense.
On 18 March, the wife of convict Akshay Singh has filed for divorce at a family court of Aurangabad in Bihar, stating that she does not want to live the life of a widow, since her husband is set to be hanged on 20 March.
On the other hand, on 17 March, convict Mukesh Singh has sought to stay his death sentence claiming that he was not in the National capital on the day of the crime. The plea dismissed by the Delhi Court headed by Additional Sessions Judge Dharmendra Rana.
Meanwhile, the National Human Rights Commission has also dismissed a complaint of the mother of convict Mukesh Kumar in the Nirbhaya case seeking urgent intervention by the commission to stop his hanging. The Commission stated that it carefully examined the contents of the complaint and did not find any substance sufficient for taking cognizance of the matter.
On 11 March, Pawan Gupta moved Delhi Court, seeking registration of FIR against two police personnel for allegedly physically assaulting him in Mandoli jail in July 2019.
On 5 March, a trial court in Delhi has issued fresh black warrants for the execution of all the four convicts in the case – Mukesh Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay (26), and Akshay (31). The convicts are scheduled to be hanged tomorrow i.e. 20 March at 5:30 AM.