Advocate Seema Kushwaha, representing Nirbhaya's parents, on Tuesday, December 3, sought an answer from the AAP-led Delhi government on why Nirbhaya's rapists have not been executed till now.
Speaking to the media Kushwaha said, "The mercy petition was filed by one of the convicts on November 4, but for one month Delhi government did not take any action. State government must answer why the case got delayed."
The counsel's comments came after the city government recommended the rejection of Vinay Sharma's mercy petition in the case pertaining to gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedic student on December 16, 2012. He is one of the convicts facing the gallows. "There is no merit in mercy petition, strongly recommended for rejection," Delhi Home Minister Satyendar Jain had stated in recommendation sent to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal.
Slamming the move, Kushwaha said that the recommendations given by Satyendar Jain "are not part of the judicial process". "His only task was to forward the mercy petition given by the convict". She added, "After Delhi High Court confirmed the death sentence of the rapists, rejected their appeal, the matter remained in the Supreme Court for two years. Where was the state government then? It got delayed and until now Nirbhaya has not been imparted justice."
Kushwaha said if the government had taken "time-bound action", gruesome rape and murder of a veterinary doctor in Telangana could have been avoided. Mercy Petition lies in saving an innocent person from being punished due to miscarriage of justice or in cases of doubtful conviction. Besides Vinay, other convicts - Akshay has not filed a review petition while Mukesh and Pawan are yet to file curative petitions.
On Monday, December 2, the Delhi government recommended rejecting the mercy petition filed by one of the 2012 Nirbhaya murder case convicts. According to reports, Delhi Home Minister Satyendar Jain has sent the file to Lt Governor Anil Baijal with Arvind Kejriwal government's recommendations in the case.
A 23-year-old paramedic student Nirbhaya was gang-raped inside a running bus by six persons on December 16 in 2012 in Delhi. The victim was severely assaulted and thrown out on the road along with her male friend and succumbed to injuries a few days later. Out of the six convicts, one committed suicide by in prison, while another, a juvenile, served maximum punishment of three years in a reform home and was set free in 2015. The remaining four rapists were convicted and handed death sentence by a trial court in 2013, confirmed by the Delhi High Court in March 2014. The Supreme Court upheld the Delhi High Court's verdict in 2017. The Tihar jail administration had issued a notice to the convicts on October 31 this year asking them to file a mercy plea before the President.
(with ANI inputs)