2 Nirbhaya convicts move Delhi court seeking stay on execution
Two convicts in the 2012 Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case have approached a Delhi court, seeking a stay on their execution on March 3. The two convicts, Akshay Singh and Pawan Gupta, argue that they have pending mercy and curative petitions, hence their hanging cannot be executed. The four convicts in the case were scheduled to be hanged at 6 am on March 3.
The convict Akshay has notably filed a fresh mercy petition before President Ram Nath Kovind. Earlier, the President had rejected Akshay's mercy petition, however, the convict has now argued that his previous petition did not contain all the facts. Meanwhile, Pawan has moved a curative petition before the Supreme Court. He was the only convict who had not filed a curative petition.
According to Hindustan Times, the two convicts have now filed a petition before a local Delhi court, seeking a stay on their execution, citing their pending petitions. The court will reportedly hear their petition on Monday (March 2), a day before their scheduled execution.
On February 5, the Delhi High Court had directed all four convicts—Akshay, Pawan, Mukesh Kumar Singh, and Vinay Kumar Sharma—to exhaust all legal remedies available to them within a week's time. The court's order came as the Centre accused the convicts of employing delay tactics by exploiting legal loopholes to defer their execution. Despite the order, both Akshay and Pawan have moved fresh petitions.
The execution of the four convicts has been deferred twice before. The four were previously scheduled to be hanged on January 22. However, the date was postponed after Mukesh filed a mercy plea. Thereafter, fresh death warrants were issued, scheduling their execution for February 1. This was also deferred after Vinay filed a mercy petition. Eventually, their execution was deferred indefinitely.
The four convicts, and two others, raped a 23-year-old student (dubbed "Nirbhaya") on a moving bus on December 16, 2012. The convicts penetrated her with iron rods, inflicting grave injuries, and the victim died two weeks later during treatment. The fifth accused, Ram Singh, allegedly committed suicide in prison in 2013. The sixth accused—a juvenile—was sent to a reformation home and was later released.