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Nirbhaya case convicts given deadline for mercy plea

Nirbhaya case convicts, clockwise from top left, Akshay Thakur, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta and Mukesh Singh.   | Photo Credit: PTI

The Tihar Jail administration sent a notice to four convicts in the Nirbhaya gangrape case asking them to apply for mercy plea before the President within seven days.

The notice reads: “Jail administration seeks to inform that all the legal proceedings regarding the case against you (convicts) have been completed. However, the only option remaining in your defence is ‘mercy petition’. Hence, the jail administration seeks to inform you that if you have not filed your ‘mercy petition’ before the President, you may do so within seven days of receiving this notice.”

“If not, then it will be deemed that you do not wish to do so and the administration will begin further proceedings regarding your sentence,” the notice says.

An application by one convict would apply to all four.

Tihar Jail Director-General Sandeep Goel said three of the four convicts are housed in Tihar while the fourth one is in Mandoli jail. The notices, in Hindi and English, were read out to the convicts and the entire process has been videographed, he said.

A senior officer from Tihar jail said the notice was handed over to the convicts on October 29.

“After getting the notices, the convicts became restless. Following the procedure, the Tihar administration will inform the trial court, which has awarded the death penalty to the convicts, about the development,” the officer added.

Meanwhile, the mother of the gangrape victim said: “I welcome the move. I hope that after seven years, my daughter will get justice. It will be the biggest message to people who are involved in crime against women.”

Counsel for the convicts A.P. Singh said he got a call from Tihar Welfare Department about the development.

“I will first apply mercy plea for convict Akshya Thakur, then for others,” said Mr. Singh.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2021 10:43:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nirbhaya-case-convicts-given-deadline-for-mercy-plea/article29847335.ece

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