Less than a fortnight before execution of the death penalty awarded in the 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape case, one of the four convicts Vinay Sharma has filed Curative Petition in the Supreme Court as a last ditch effort.
All convicts- Mukesh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31) are to be hanged on January 22 at 7 am in Tihar jail following the death warrant issued by a Delhi trial court against them earlier this week.
This is the fist curative petition in the case. No convict has has availed the last legal remedy so far.
Vinay's petition was drawn and settled by his lawyer Dr A P Singh and certification was given by Senior Advocate Dr Adish Aggarwal, which is mandatory to file a curative petition.
The plea is seeking to set aside the top court's May 5, 2017 verdict upholding the Delhi High Court's order confirming the death penalty to them.
Praying to commute the death sentence, the petition said "after the court's judgement on May, 5,2017, there has been as many as 17 cases involving sexual violence and murder in which various three judge benches of this court have commuted the sentence of death. This corpus of case law has caused a definite change in the sentencing jurisprudence which requires that the petitioner's case be reheard and the law laid down in the ae cases be applied to the petitioner's case."
It relied on the probability of convict's reformation and also claimed lack of criminal antecedent of the convict for which the death penalty should be commuted.
In addition, it was stated that the court had ignored the young age and poor socio-economic background of the convict.
"The mitigating factor of young age was specifically argued in favour of the petitioner...and this court had taken note of the same. However, this has not been addressed in the judgement leading to a violation of the principles of natural justice."
"Poor socio-economic condition of the accused is an important mitigating circumstance which needs to be taken into consideration by th court while sentencing but the case of the petitioner was ignored by the courts."
Last month, the Apex Court had dismissed the review plea of convict Akshay, after which the Delhi court has issued death warrant against the convicts.
On December 16-17 night, 2019, a paramedico student was gang-raped in a moving bus by the convicts. Few days after, the victim had succumbed to the brutal injury caused to her by them.
Prime accused Ram Singh had committed suicide in the Tihar jail in March 2013.