In a latest development in the Nirbhaya case, Supreme Court on Saturday fixed March 16 for hearing a petition filed by one of the death row convicts, Mukesh Singh, seeking action against his former advocate, for restoration of his legal remedies. This comes after a Delhi court on Thursday issued a fresh death warrant for the four convicts -- Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Singh Thakur, and Mukesh Singh -- in the December 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case for their execution at 5:30 am on March 20.
On Friday, the current lawyer of Nirbhaya gang-rape convict had filed a petition in the Supreme Court against his former lawyer Vrinda Grower. Advocate ML Sharma, in his petition, alleged that convict Mukesh Singh's former lawyer Grover had allegedly hatched a criminal conspiracy against Mukesh with Delhi Police. The petition said that according to law, she could have waited to file a curative petition for three years but deliberately filed the curative petition early, to ensure that this petition gets dismissed and Mukesh is hanged.
2012 Delhi gang-rape case: Supreme Court today fixed March 16 (Monday), to hear a petition filed by one of the Nirbhaya death row convicts, Mukesh Singh, seeking action against his former advocate, for the restoration of his legal remedies in the case.— ANI (@ANI) March 7, 2020
On Wednesday, the Delhi government moved to the court seeking a fresh date for the execution of the four convicts, saying all the legal remedies are exhausted. President Ram Nath Kovind rejected the last mercy plea, filed by Pawan Gupta. The trial court had on February 17 issued a fresh date, March 3 at 6 am, for the execution of the four convicts -- Mukesh Kumar Singh (32), Pawan (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31) -- in the case.
The death warrants has been deferred thrice so far due to delays by them in exhausting legal remedies. All the convicts in the case are to be hanged together. The President had already rejected the mercy petitions of Mukesh, Vinay and Akshay.
A 23-year-old paramedic student Nirbhaya was gang-raped inside a running bus by six persons on December 16, 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 reportedly committed suicide 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 the death penalty 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.