Supreme Court dismisses plea seeking immediate execution of death row convicts in 2012 December gangrape case

The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a petition seeking directions for the immediate execution of the four men convicted in the Delhi gangrape and murder case of 2012.

Press Trust of India December 13, 2018 14:32:55 IST
Supreme Court dismisses plea seeking immediate execution of death row convicts in 2012 December gangrape case

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a petition seeking directions for the immediate execution of the four men convicted in the Delhi gangrape and murder case of 2012. "What kind of prayer you are making?" a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta said. "You are making the court a joke," it added.

Supreme Court dismisses plea seeking immediate execution of death row convicts in 2012 December gangrape case

File image of the Supreme Court. AP

A 23-year-old paramedic student was raped on the intervening night of 16-17 December, 2012 inside a running bus in South Delhi by six persons and severely assaulted before being thrown out on the road. She died on 29 December, 2012 at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore. One of the accused Ram Singh had hanged himself in the jail and another, the juvenile, was convicted of rape and murder and given the maximum sentence of three years' imprisonment in a reform facility.

On 9 July, the apex court dismissed the pleas of three convicts — Mukesh (31), Pawan Gupta (24) and Vinay Sharma (25) — seeking review of it 2017 verdict which upheld the capital punishment awarded to them by the Delhi High Court and the trial court in the case. The fourth death row convict, Akshay Kumar Singh (33), has not filed a review plea in the apex court. The PIL, filed by lawyer Alakh Alok Srivastava, had said that despite a lapse of more than four and a half months from the date of dismissal of the review petitions of three convicts, the death penalty has not yet been executed. The plea had said that in rape-cum-murder cases, the fate of the accused must be decided in a period of eight months from the lower court to the apex court. Such a delay in execution of death penalty is acting as a bad precedent and has resulted in increasing incidents of rapes being reported on a daily basis, it had said.

The fact that the death row convicts have not yet been hanged despite elapse of more than five years of their initial conviction "apparently gives an impression in the minds of the rapists that they would also be harmless if they commit such heinous crimes", the plea had said. The plea had also sought guidelines to prescribe strict timelines for speedy execution of death row convicts in rape-cum-murder cases, so that the remedies of appeal in high court, appeal, review, a curative petition in the apex court and mercy petition before the president are exhausted by the convicts within a maximum period of eight months.

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