Death-row convict Vinay Sharma moves Election Commission for relief

Vinay Sharma, one of the four death-row convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case, on Thursday, approached the election commission of India challenging the rejection of his mercy plea.

Vinay Sharma challenged the government of Delhi, raising questions on the timing of the rejection of his mercy plea. Advocate A P Singh, Vinay’s Counsel, told the electoral body that the code of model conduct was in force in Delhi when Vinay’s plea for grant of mercy was rejected by Minister Manish Sisodia, which made him ineligible to reject the plea.

“We have filed a complaint in the Election Commission of India because the mercy petition of Vinay Sharma reached the Delhi government on January 30. At that time the government recommended the rejection. He was not an MLA or home minister of Delhi government because Model Code of Conduct was imposed,” said advocate AP Singh.

Campaigning for  Delhi elections were on when the mercy plea was reportedly rejected by Sisodia, who contested the polls.

Vinay’s plea before the Election Commission also pointed out that digital signatures of Sisodia were required, but a WhatsApp screenshot was sent out instead to reject the mercy petition.

Earlier on the same day, a Delhi court heard another plea moved by Vinay, praying that he be given high-level treatment for alleged mental illness, including schizophrenia. Vinay also attempted to hurt himself last week in jail. The Superintendent of Tihar Jail has been directed by the court to file his report in this regard. The matter is listed for hearing on February 22.

Vinay has exhausted all the legal remedies with the confirmation of the death sentence to him along with the other three convicts, who are scheduled to be hanged on March 3 at 6 am.

Advocate Singh has asked the Election Commission to take cognizance of the matter as soon as possible and in the interest of justice.

Angel Mary Aju

Law student at Government Law College, Mumbai.
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