The Ministry of Home Affairs has moved a plea in Supreme Court for fixing seven days as a deadline for executing the death penalty of condemned prisoners. The ministry seeks a direction “to mandate all competent courts, state governments, prison authorities in the country to issue death warrant of a convict within seven days of rejection of his mercy petition to execute death sentence within 7 days thereafter irrespective of the stage of review petition/curative petition/mercy petition of his co-convicts.
Hence now a convict can file mercy petition only within 7 days from the date of issuing of their black warrant. The government gave stress on the point that the most important issue now was to lay down guidelines that favor the victims rather than to focus on the rights of the accused.
The plea of the center is of great importance as the hanging of the sensational Nirbhaya case convicts was delayed due to curative and mercy petitions.
Nirbhaya’s case refers to the brutal gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedical student on the night of December 16, 2012, by a gang of six men in a moving bus in south Delhi. Recently fresh death warrants has been issued for February 1 against the four convicts — Vinay Sharma (26), Akshay Kumar Singh (31), Mukesh Kumar Singh (32) and Pawan (26) as their hanging got delayed from January 22 due to pending petitions.
The Centre also stressed that those punished for “horrible, dreadful, cruel, abominable, ghastly, gruesome and heinous offences” like rape and murder should not be permitted to play with the “majesty of the law”.