A five-judge bench of the Supreme Court on March 2nd, 2020 has rejected the curative petition filed by Delhi gang-rape convict Pawan Kumar Gupta (25). The Supreme Court was hearing ‘in-chamber’ the curative plea of Gupta.
The four convicts were ordered to be hanged on March 3rd, 2020 in the gruesome gang rape and murder of a 23-year-old woman in a moving bus in Delhi, causing massive outrage across the country.
On February 28th, 2020, Gupta, one of the four convicts, approached the Supreme Court with a curative petition, seeking reconsideration of final judgement on the ground that he was minor at the time of the incident in 2012.
Though the Supreme Court had earlier in January rejected his similar plea of juvenility, he has preferred to raise it again in his curative petition.
A five-judge bench headed by Justice N V Ramana said no case is made out for re-examining the conviction and the punishment of the convict.
The trial court on February 17th, 2020 issued fresh date for execution of death warrants for March 3 at 6 am for the four convicts – Gupta, Mukesh Kumar Singh (32), Vinay Kumar Sharma (26) and Akshay Singh (31) – in the Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case.
The mercy petitions of three convicts – Mukesh, Vinay and Akshay – have already been dismissed by the President. Separate curative pleas filed by Mukesh and Vinay were earlier dismissed by the Supreme Court.
2012 Delhi Gang-Rape Case
The Nirbhaya gang-rape incident occurred on December 16th, 2012 in Munirka in South Delhi. A 23-year-old female physiotherapy intern was beaten, gang-raped, and tortured in a government bus by six men. Eleven days after the assault, she was transferred to a hospital in Singapore but succumbed to her injuries two days later.
All the accused were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder. One of the accused, Ram Singh, died in police custody from possible suicide in the Tihar Jail. Three convicts are lodged in Tihar Jail while the fourth one is in Mandoli’s jail number 14.
On September 10th, 2013, the four remaining adult defendants – Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur and Pawan Gupta – were found guilty of rape and murder and three days later were sentenced to death by hanging. The Delhi High Court as well as Supreme Court have upheld the guilty verdict and the death sentences.
The juvenile was convicted of rape and murder and was sentenced to three years of imprisonment in a reform facility.
The brutal gang-rape and murder of the young physiotherapy intern led to nationwide protests. The movement forced the government to set up a committee to review the laws on rape and crime against women.