In yet another move that could delay the execution of the Nirbhaya rapists, Convict Akshay Singh has moved Delhi court seeking a stay on the execution of death warrants for all four convicts. The Delhi court has then directed Tihar Jail authorities to respond by Monday. Earlier in the day, convict Pawan Kumar Gupta also moved Delhi court seeking a stay on execution, saying that his curative petition is pending in the Supreme Court.
Convict Akshay had earlier moved a mercy petition claiming that his earlier petition that was dismissed "did not have all the facts". This step comes two days ahead of their execution. Meanwhile, convict Pawan Kumar Gupta on February 28 filed his curative plea before the Supreme Court, and the hearing has been scheduled on March 2, at 10:25 in the morning. The convicts in the case are scheduled to be executed on March 3 at 6 AM, as per the order of the Patiala High Court.
The mercy petitions of three convicts -- Mukesh Kumar Singh, Vinay Kumar Sharma, and Akshay Kumar -- have already been dismissed by the President. Pawan Gupta was the last to file a curative petition in the Supreme Court. He is yet to file the mercy petition before President Ram Nath Kovind.
The Patiala House court on February 17 issued a third death warrant for the Nirbhaya convicts. As per the warrant, the Nirbhaya rapists will be hanged on March 3. This came after Patiala House Court heard the arguments of both the prosecutor and the counsels for rapists. The Supreme Court has rejected all convicts' review petition while the President has rejected three mercy pleas. The Supreme Court has rejected three convicts' curative petition, while one is pending. Previously, the Patiala House court had set an execution date on January 22 and later extended it to February 1.
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 heinously mutilated and thrown out on the road along with her male friend and succumbed to injuries a few days later, with the entire nation praying for her by way of mass demonstrations and candle-light marches.
(with PTI inputs)