A court in Delhi on Thursday rejected a petition filed by the four death-row convicts in the 2012 gangrape and murder case to stall their execution on Friday, PTI reported. The convicts – Mukesh Singh, Akshay Thakur, Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta will be hanged at Tihar Jail in Delhi on Friday as scheduled for raping and brutally assaulting a 23-year-old physiotherapy student in 2012.
Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana dismissed the petition. The plea was moved on the ground that the second mercy petition filed by convict Akshay Thakur was pending before the president.
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court dismissed the petition filed by Mukesh Singh, claiming that the trial was vitiated on account of concealment of documents and evidence, reported LiveLaw.
A three-judge bench head by Justice R Banumathi said the court cannot “endlessly review” its orders. Advocate ML Sharma, representing Singh, said the convict has accepted his fate and does not want to delay the execution. “Even after the execution, the facts must be examined so that in future no other innocent should become victim of failure of justice due to media pressure,” Singh told the court. “Truth should be seen by the world.”
Sharma said he wanted to look into the documents of the case which were not available to him. “The documents are a matter of trial,” the court told him. “Once the trial is over the appeal process is over there is no forum to raise all of this.”
He argued that the curative and mercy petitions were filed by another lawyer after pressuring the convict. Singh’s counsel also claimed that the convict was not in Delhi when the crime took place, Bar and Bench reported. The court said the point has been argued and considered. However, Sharma claimed that the only document that proves that he was not in the city was not placed on record.
“All your remedies are over, review, curative, mercy – all rights have been exercised, how can you now come and say that some documents were not placed on record,” Banumathi asked the convict.
The court dismissed the petition, saying there is no merit and reason to entertain it after all the rights and remedies given to the accused were exercised and heard at length by them.
The top court also rejected Pawan Gupta’s petition claiming that he was a juvenile when the crime took place.
All four convicts have filed multiple petitions over the last few months in an attempt to stall their hanging. Their mercy petitions have been rejected by President Kovind. Death warrants in the case have been issued for the fourth time.