If You’re Wondering Why There’s A Delay In The Nirbhaya Case Again, It’s Because Of These Reasons
‘Justice delayed is justice denied’ is a phrase we have all heard and looking at how the Indian judicial system works, we have also believed it. But looking at how the Nirbhaya case is progressing, and with the courts dismissing the curative petitions, we had a ray of hope. Of course, in this case too, justice was delayed by a long, long period but it seemed like the end was close. In this gut-wrenching case of 2012, it was delayed by seven years before the Patiala House Court in Delhi ruled that the four remaining convicts Vinay Sharma (26), Mukesh Singh (32), Akshay Kumar Singh (31) and Pawan Gupta (25) were to be executed on January 22nd.
But of course, like every story, this one too isn’t without its twists. The first twist came just yesterday when the curative petitions of two of the convicts, Mukesh Singh and Vinay Sharma were dismissed by a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court. We definitely welcomed that curve in the story, but we might’ve been too quick to assume that the battle was over and that Nirbhaya had emerged triumphant.
The only reason I am saying that is because today the Delhi government told the high court that the execution of the four convicts will “surely not take place” on January 22nd. The reason behind this is, after his curative petition was denied yesterday, Mukesh Singh filed a mercy plea. While he is well within his rights to ask the president for mercy, none of the convicts can be executed until a decision is made by President Ram Nath Kovind. Though it seems unlikely that they will be exonerated, or their sentence will be overturned, they still have more than a week to breathe.
Also Read: The Apex Court Dismisses Curative Petitions Of Two Of The Four Nirbhaya Convicts. Why Didn’t The Other Two File Petitions?
The #DelhiGovernment and #Tihar authorities said that under the rules, they will have to wait for mercy plea of one of the #Nirbhaya gangrape convicts to be decided before executing the death warrant due on January 22 https://t.co/UgFzxbKUBq
— National Herald (@NH_India) January 15, 2020
What we have learned about this whole situation is that the Indian judicial system has multiple refuges that these convicts are using, possibly to delay their execution. Did you know that according to the jail manuals, regardless of whether the mercy plea is accepted or rejected, the convicts have to be given 14 days’ notice before execution? Yep, that is why there arose a need to postpone their execution date. Another thing that the jail manual state is that all convicts of the same crime, must be executed together. This is why even though only Mukesh has filed a mercy plea, none of them can be hung unless the decision is made.
So how is the decision made? The lawyer on behalf of the Delhi government, Rahul Mehra told the HC that the petition filed by Mukesh was with the home department of the state government which would be then forwarded to the Lieutenant Governor’s office which will then be given to the Union home ministry and then finally the President. As per reports, the home department of the Delhi government has recommended the rejection of the mercy plea and has forwarded it to the LG’s office.
Also Read: Justice For Nirbhaya: 7 Years Late But The Four Convicts Are Finally Being Executed. This Is Good News
Nirbhaya's mother Asha Devi requests President to reject mercy plea of convict https://t.co/WdoDQCFx7L
— Republic (@republic) January 15, 2020
After this news broke, Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi requested our President to reject Mukesh’s mercy plea and said that “They will be hanged on the decided date, no matter which court they approach.” At this point we can only wait, watch and hope she is right.
This case is not only important because it sent the country into shock when it happened. It is also a landmark in how the future gang rape cases will be treated in our judicial system. Nirbhaya suffered enough, the least we can do for her is get her the justice she deserves. And now, without delay.