Nirbhaya Case Hangings: Delhi HC Gives Convicts One Week To Exhaust Legal Options

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday said the convicts in the Nirbhaya case will get one week to exercise all their legal remedies, after which the trial court will begin proceedings for their execution.

The HC order settled the Centre’s petition against the indefinite freeze on execution placed by a lower court.

Justice Suresh Kait, who was hearing the case, however, refused the Centre’s request to hang the convicts separately.

“Delhi Prison Rules do not say that if mercy petition of one convict is pending, the execution of the other convicts can take place,” the judge said.

“Since up to the Supreme Court, their fate has been decided by a common judgment, I am of the opinion that death warrant of all convicts should be executed together and not separately,” he added.

“I’m glad that the High Court has set a time limit for the process. The convicts have been delaying it, now it has to done within a week,” Nirbhaya’s mother told reporters.

Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta, Mukesh Singh and Akshay Singh, who were convicted for the shocking gang-rape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedical student dubbed Nirbhaya by the media in Delhi in 2012, were to be executed on February 1.

But the trial court postponed the execution indefinitely after a second convict, Vinay Sharma, filed a mercy petition before President Ram Nath Kovind. After his appeal was turned down, another convict, Akshay Singh, filed his mercy plea.

The Centre contended that the convicts were working in tandem, using every possible loophole to delay the execution.

“The accused are trying the patience of the nation. Such delays will shake the faith of people in the administration of justice,” Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said, asking that the execution of the two convicts who exhausted all the legal options be carried out.

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