For Yakub Memon the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts convict, the last ray of hope is in a curative petition that he has filed before the Supreme Court. A curative petition is the last form of appeal before the Supreme Court, but legal experts say that it is only 1 out of every 100 times that such a petition is entertained.
Sources in the Maharashtra Home department tell OneIndia that they have already begun preparations for the hanging of Yakub Memon. The family has been informed and the execution will take place at 7 AM on July 30.
Memon's health being monitored:
Ahead of the hanging of Yakub Memon, his health is being regularly monitored. This is a normal procedure that is to be adopted in the case of any death row convict who awaits death penalty. With the date of the hanging now being fixed and also approved by Maharashtra Chief Minister, Devendra Fadnavis, a team of doctors regularly monitor Memon's health.
So far there are no issues and he is stable both physically and mentally. Sources inform that he is calm but refuses to speak to anyone. An opportunity given to him by the jail authorities for him to meet his lawyer was turned down. However Memon according to sources sees a very tiny ray of hope in the curative petition that is expected to come up before the Supreme Court next week.
Jail authorities have made all preparations and the hangman too is in place. The gallows are being repeatedly checked as per the procedure. As part of the procedure the hangman rehearses the hanging with a dummy several times leading up to the date of the actual execution. A well oiled rope to ensure that the hanging goes on smoothly too has been brought to the gallows.
Curative petitions not always a solution:
In the case of Yakub Memon there has already been a lot of time that has gone thanks to various stays and petitions that he has filed by the court. In the Supreme Court if a petition is rejected a person has the right to first file a review petition. However if the review is rejected then the last option is a curative petition.
However in the case of Memon, there is a drawback since his involves a death sentence. In this case, it is the President who has the final say in the matter. Memon had moved a mercy petition before the President of India which was rejected. Courts normally do not interfere with the decision of a president unless it finds that there has been an inordinate delay in deciding the mercy petition.
Last moments of a death row convict:
Once the state government fixes the date of execution, the jail superintendent would then inform the relatives of the same. The prisoner would then be allowed to prepare a will. After this mandatory procedure the hangman steps in and has the following preparations to undertake:
- If the prisoner weighs less than 100 lbs. or 45 kgs, he should be given a drop of 8 feet or 2.5 mtrs.
Prisoners weighs 45 to 60 kgs, he should be given a drop of 7 feet 8 inches or 2.3 mtrs.
- If the prisoner weighs more than 133 lbs. or 60 kgs, but not more than 166 lbs. or 75 kgs, he should be given a drop of 7 feet or 2.2 mtrs.
- If the prisoner weighs more than 166 lbs. or 75 kgs. but not more than 200 lbs. or 91 kgs, he should be given a drop of 6 feet 6 inches or 2 mtrs.
- If the prisoner weighs more than 200 lbs. or 91 kgs, he should be given a drop of 6 feet 1.83 mtrs.
The day of the execution:
On the day of the execution the superintendent, deputy superintendent, assistant superintendent in charge and medical officer shall be present at the gallows.
- An executive magistrate deputed by the district magistrate shall attend the execution and countersign the warrant.
- If the prisoner so desires, a priest of his faith may be allowed, at the discretion of the superintendent, to be present at the place of execution, subject to the requirements of security and prison discipline. The relatives of the prisoner and other prisoners shall not be allowed to witness the execution.
- The superintendent may, however, permit social scientists, psychologists, psychiatrists, etc. who are conducting research to be present.
- At the time of the execution prisoners of all categories shall be kept locked up until the execution is over.
- The night before the execution the prisoner shall be provided with the food of his choice. The next day two hours before the execution he shall be woken up and ordered to take a bath. A fresh set of clothes are then provided to him and the moment is he is out of the cell, his face shall be hooded and hands bound
- The prisoner shall be allowed to see the gallows. The prisoner will be made to walk through the passageway which is around 20 metres and is covered in less than a minute.
- Once the execution is carried out, the body shall remain suspended for half an hour and will be taken down only once the medical officer has certified the prisoner as dead. The body will be disposed off according to religious requirements.
- In case the family members of the family make a request in writing, the superintendent may hand over the body on the condition that no public display is made when the cremation or the burial takes place.