The Supreme court on Friday reserved its order on the petition filed by two of the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape case. The two accused had sought a review of the top court’s 2017 verdict in which it upheld the death penalty awarded to them.
A division bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra and comprising Justices R Banumathi and Justice Ashok Bhushan have reserved the verdict after hearing the arguments from both sides. The two accused — Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta — had filed a plea before the top court last year seeking a review of the death penalty sentence.
The top court has further asked senior advocate Siddharth Luthra, representing Delhi Police, and lawyer A P Singh, counsel for Vinay and Pawan, to file their written submissions by May 8, 2018. Earlier, the top court had reserved its verdict on the plea filed by another accused Mukesh.
In its order on May 5, 2017, the apex court had upheld the decision of the Delhi High court and the trial court to award death sentence to all the four convicts — Mukesh, Pawan, Vinay and Akshay– in the December 16, 2012 gang rape and murder case. While, another accused Ram Singh had committed suicide in jail and the sixth accused Ram Singh, a minor was awarded three years imprisonment in a correctional home by the Juvenile Justice Board. Singh was released from the correctional home in November 2015.
A 23-year-old paramedical student was gang-raped inside a moving bus in the national capital on December 16, 2012. Later, she was thrown out of the bus after being severely assaulted. She was taken to Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore for better treatment but she succumbed to her injuries on December 29, 2012.
The incident had led to a nationwide outrage forcing the then UPA government to appoint a three-member committee headed by former Chief Justice of India, Justice J.S. Verma to recommend amendments to the criminal law and provide for speedy trial and harsher punishments for criminals accused of being involved in sexual offences against women.