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Delhi gangrape case: HC hearing on death sentence reference deferred

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court today further deferred to 8 October hearing on the death penalty reference against four convicts in the December 16 gangrape and murder case of a 23-year-old paramedic.

A bench of justices Reva Khetrapal and Pratibha Rani postponed the matter after the counsel for the convicts told the bench that they would file the appeal soon.

The counsel for convicts Mukesh (26), Akshay Thakur (28), Pawan Gupta (19) and Vinay Sharma (20), who were awarded death penalty by the trial court, also informed the bench that they have received the necessary set of documents from the police.

However, the counsel told the bench that they are yet to receive the translation of the victim's dying declaration from Hindi to English language and also the relevant statements of witnesses under section 161 and 164 CrPC.

 Delhi gangrape case: HC hearing on death sentence reference deferred

Delhi gangrape case accused in a police van in this file photo. AFP

Taking note of the submissions made by the counsel for the convicts, the bench fixed the matter for 8 October.

The high court on 25 September had directed the police to supply to offenders the necessary set of documents.

The bench had asked the high court Registry to furnish a translation.

On 13 September, while awarding capital punishment to Mukesh, Akshay, Pawan and Vinay, the trial court had referred the case to the high court for confirmation of the sentence.

The trial court has to refer each death penalty case to the high court for confirmation of the punishment.

The four were awarded death penalty in the gangrape case by the trial court which said it fell in the rarest of rare category as the crime was committed against the "defenceless" girl in a "beastly" and "hair-raising" manner.

"Accordingly, the convicts be hanged by neck till they are dead," the trial court had said, noting that the inhuman and ghastly acts of the convicts shocked the collective conscience of the nation and deserves exemplary punishment.

Prime accused Ram Singh (34) was found dead in a cell in Tihar Jail in March and proceedings against him were abated. On 31 August, the juvenile accused was convicted and sentenced to a maximum of three years in a reformation home.

On 16 December last year, the paramedic student was gangraped in a moving bus in south Delhi after the convicts lured her and her male friend, who was also assaulted, on board the vehicle, which was found to be plying illegally.

The victim's 28-year-old friend suffered fractures in his limbs. The girl succumbed to her injuries on 29 December in a Singapore hospital.

PTI

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Updated Date: Oct 01, 2013 15:24:59 IST