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Nirbhaya case: Another death-row convict, Mukesh files curative petition

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New Delhi, Jan 10: After Vinay Kumar Sharma, another death-row convict Mukesh Singh too filed a curative petition in the 2012 Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case, in a bid to delay the death penalty to be executed on 22 January.

Mukesh Singh files curative petition

A curative petition is the last legal remedy available to a convict.

Advocate Vrinda Grover, who is the amicus curiae in the case, filed the petition on Mukesh's behalf.

In his curative plea, Mukesh said that there has been a sea change in the jurisprudence of death sentencing in India, brought about by Supreme Court in several judgments.

In a case where the very life of the Petitioner- the most cherished right under the Constitution is at stake, upholding and executing the death sentence of the Petitioner despite a subsequent change in the law would result in a gross miscarriage of justice.

The Petitioner submits that the Supreme Court has recently evolved the doctrine of "residual doubt", a lingering doubt which is not in the realm of 'beyond reasonable doubt', as a mitigating factor warranting the commutation of sentence of death.

The petitions come two days after a Delhi court issued a death warrant against the four death-row convicts - Mukesh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31) - with their scheduled execution to take place at 7 am on 22 January in Tihar Jail. The four convicts are likely to be shifted to Jail No. 3 in Tihar on Friday, said a senior jail official. Currently, three convicts are lodged in Jail No. 2 and one in Jail No. 4.

Nirbhaya, a 23-year-old paramedic student, was gang-raped and brutalised on the intervening night of December 16-17, 2012, inside a moving bus in south Delhi by the four men, along with two others, before being dumped on the road.

She died on December 29, 2012, at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore.

Of the six persons convicted, one allegedly committed suicide in jail and another, a juvenile, was released from a reformation home after serving a three-year term.

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