President of India Ram Nath Kovind on Friday rejected the mercy petition of death row convict Mukesh Singh, who had earlier been sentenced to death along with three others in connection with the 2012 Delhi Nirbhaya case.
Delay in the execution
According to the court’s order on January 7, the four criminals -Mukesh Singh (32), Vinay Sharma (26), Akshay Kumar Singh (31) and Pawan Gupta (25) were to be hanged on January 22 at 7 am in Tihar Jail. However, the Delhi government had informed the high court during a hearing that the execution of the convicts will not take place on January 22 as a mercy appeal has been filed by Mukesh.
Making ill-usage of the judiciary system it is clear that the death row convicts are delaying their ultimate end by filing curative petitions and once they get rejected they send mercy petitions to the President, one by one.
In an interview with ANI, Asha Devi bashed political parties for accusing each other over the delay in the hanging of the four convicts. “Previously, I never spoke about politics, I have only requested for justice with my folded hands. But now I want to say that those people who protested on the streets with the tricolor and black flags in 2012, today they are playing with my daughter’s death for political gains,” Nirbhaya’s mother said.
#WATCH Asha Devi, mother of 2012 Delhi gang-rape victim: Till now, I never talked about politics, but now I want to say that those people who held protests on streets in 2012, today the same people are only playing with my daughter's death for political gains. pic.twitter.com/FvaC89TwKI
— ANI (@ANI) January 17, 2020
According to the latest update, Delhi Judge Satish Kumar Arora who has previously signed the death warrant for 22nd January has issued a new order after he was informed about the rejection of a mercy plea filed by Mukesh Singh. “I am issuing a fresh warrant for 1st February at 6 am,” he said.
President rejects mercy petition
The Ministry of Home Affairs had earlier in the day sent the mercy petition of convict Mukesh Singh to the President. And now according to the sources, the Rashtrapati Bhavan has announced the decision of the President to the Union Home Ministry.
The convict’s lawyer, however, said they haven’t got any information regarding the President’s decision on mercy plea. “We have not informed if the decision has been delivered to Mukesh in jail or not. We will find out at 3 pm in Patiala House court,” the lawyer said.
Previously the mercy plea was also rejected by the Delhi government, following which the appeal was forwarded to the Lieutenant Governor, who had then transferred it to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to, indeed, be sent to the President.
Responding to the events, Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi said that she greeted the decision of President Ram Nath Kovind to reject the mercy petition but her daughter will only get justice on January 22 when the death row convicts are hanged.
She also claimed that the filing of the mercy petitions by the death row convicts is just a means to delay the process of hanging, taking advantage of the bureaucracy of the system.