Editorial: Justice delayed is…

The Supreme Court has rejected the plea of Mukesh Singh, one of the four death-row convicts in the 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case, seeking restoration of all his legal remedies alleging that his earlier lawyers misled him.

A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and M R Shah held Singh’s plea as not maintainable saying that the review petition and the curative petition have both been dismissed in the case.

The convict had sought quashing of all orders passed by courts and the rejection of his mercy petition by the President since the day his curative petition was dismissed by the apex court on the ground that the earlier lawyer Vrinda Grover had misled him.

The plea, filed through advocate M L Sharma, sought a CBI probe into alleged ”criminal conspiracy” and ”fraud” hatched by the Centre, the Delhi government and advocate Vrinda Grover, who is the amicus curiae in the case.

On 5 March, a trial court issued fresh warrants with 20 March, 5.30 am, as the date for the execution of the convicts Mukesh Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Singh (31).

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.

NT Bureau