Even as the execution of the Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case convicts getting delayed, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on Sunday told the Delhi High Court that there is a deliberate, calculated and well thought of design by the convicts to ‘frustrate mandate of law’ by getting their punishment delayed.
Mehta told Justice Suresh Kait that convict Pawan Gupta’s move of not filing a curative or a mercy petition is a deliberate, calculated inaction. The four Nirbhaya case convicts are playing with judicial machinery and trying patience of the nation, Mehta said. ‘There is deliberate, calculated and well thought of design to frustrate mandate of law,’ Solicitor General Mehta told the High Court.
The HC is hearing the Centre’s plea challenging stay on the execution of the four death row convicts in the Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case. Advocate A P Singh appeared for convicts Akshay Singh (31), Vinay Sharma (26) and Pawan gupta (25) opposing the Centre’s plea to set aside stay on execution of death sentence.
Senior advocate Rebecca John, representing the fourth convict Mukesh Kumar (32), raised preliminary objection on the Centre’s plea saying it was not maintainable. She contended that the Centre was never a party in the case proceedings before the trial court and while the government was accusing the convict of delay, it has woken up just two days ago.
‘It was the victim’s parents who moved the trial court for issuance of death warrants against the convicts. At no point the central government or the state government approached the trial court to immediately issue death warrants,’ John contended.
John told the High Court that the Centre has moved a plea in the Supreme Court seeking clarification whether co-convicts can be executed separately and this petition is pending before the apex court. A 23-year-old paramedic student, referred to as Nirbhaya, was raped and brutally assaulted on the intervening night of December 16-17, 2012 inside a moving bus in south Delhi by six persons, before being thrown out on the road.
She died on 29 December, 2012 in Singapore’s Mount Elizabeth Hospital. One of the six accused in the case, Ram Singh, allegedly committed suicide in the Tihar Jail. A juvenile, who was among the accused, was convicted by a juvenile justice board and was released from a reformation home after serving a three-year term. The top court, in its 2017 verdict, had upheld the capital punishment awarded to the convicts by the Delhi High Court and the trial court. There should not be further delays in serving the punishment.