A Delhi court on Saturday disposed a petition filed by the lawyer for three of the four death-row convicts in the 2012 Delhi gangrape case alleging that Tihar Jail authorities were delaying the procedure to file mercy and curative petitions, reported PTI. Additional Sessions Judge Ajay Kumar Jain said the convicts’ lawyer can take pictures of the relevant documents, diary and paintings from the Tihar jail authorities.
During the hearing, the Delhi Police told the Patiala House Court that the death-row convicts were adopting “delaying tactics”. The police said the Tihar jail authorities have supplied all the relevant documents sought by the lawyer of the convicts. “The entire process is to defeat the law,” said the public prosecutor. “We have already supplied all the documents. We procured all the documents from all the jails where they went.”
On Friday, lawyer AP Singh claimed the jail authorities had yet to release the documents required to file the mercy petition for convict Vinay Sharma and the curative petitions for Akshay Kumar Singh and Pawan Gupta.
The fourth convict, Mukesh Singh, has already had his curative plea as well as mercy plea rejected.
Sharma’s curative plea was rejected by the Supreme Court along with Singh’s, and he can now file a mercy plea before President Ram Nath Kovind. The other two convicts have both options left.
The Supreme Court had on Monday dismissed Gupta’s claim that he was a juvenile at the time of the crime in 2012 and fined the lawyer Rs 25,000 for wasting its time.
The convicts had been first given the death sentence by a trial court in 2013. The punishment was upheld by the Delhi High Court six months later and by the Supreme Court in May 2017. However, it took until earlier this month for a court to issue death warrants – but even that had to be postponed because the convicts continued to use the legal options available.
The executions are now scheduled for 6 am on February 1.
Six men raped and brutally assaulted a 23-year-old physiotherapy student in a moving bus in Delhi on the night of December 16, 2012. The woman succumbed to her injuries two weeks later at a hospital in Singapore. The gangrape triggered huge protests in the Capital and across the country. One convict died in prison, while a minor convict was sent to a detention home for juveniles and was released in December 2015.