Two days before the voting for the Delhi Assembly polls, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar on Thursday accused the AAP-led Delhi government of causing a delay in the hanging of Nirbhaya’s convicts. Citing the Delhi High Court’s observations, he contended that the Delhi government had failed to act for 18 months after the Supreme Court upheld the death sentence of the convicts. Thereafter, he termed the delay as “unpardonable”.
#Nirbhaya culprits would have been hanged much earlier if Delhi Govt had acted in time. Delhi Govt authorities did not communicate to the convicts for 18 long months, which was their responsibility . Now High Court has also confirmed that. #ShameOnKejriwal #nirbhayabetrayed— Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar) February 6, 2020
On Wednesday, Justice Suresh Kumar Kait of the Delhi High Court dismissed the Ministry of Home Affairs' plea challenging the Patiala House Court's decision to stay the execution of the Nirbhaya convicts. Javedekar's allegation finds a reference in paragraph 64 of the judgment. Justice Kait has commented that the authorities failed to execute the death warrant for a long duration for "reasons best known to them".
In paragraph 64 of the Delhi HC order, it is stated, "In the present case, Criminal Appeals of all the convicts were dismissed by the Supreme Court on 05.05.2017. Thereafter, review petitions were filed by convicts, namely, Mukesh, Akshay, Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta after 186 days, 950 days, 225 days and 225 days respectively. I have no hesitation to say that after dismissal of criminal appeals on 05.05.2017 by the Supreme Court, nobody had bothered to execute the death warrants. They waited for the reasons best known to them, till convict Mukesh filed review petition before the Supreme Court on 06.11.2017 after 186 days and the same was dismissed on 09.07.2018."
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.