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Nirbhaya gangrape case: SC asks convict to file review petition soon

The Supreme Court on Monday asked one of the four death row convicts in the sensational December 16, 2012, gangrape and murder case to file his plea seeking a review of its verdict upholding the death sentence awarded to him soon.

The apex court said it “cannot wait” for long.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra was informed that one of the four convicts, Akshay Kumar Singh, has not yet filed a plea for the review of the apex court’s May 5 verdict delivered last year.

The top court had upheld the death penalty to the four convicts last year, namely, Mukesh (29), Pawan (22), Vinay Sharma (23) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31), saying the “brutal, barbaric and diabolic nature” of the crime could create a “tsunami of shock” to destroy a civilised society.

A 23-year-old paramedic student was gang-raped on the intervening night of December 16-17, 2012 inside a moving bus in South Delhi by a gang of six persons and severely assaulted before being thrown out naked.

She succumbed to her injuries on December 29, 2012, at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore.

During the brief hearing on Monday, the court asked advocate A P Singh, who is representing Akshay and two other convicts, as to why a review petition has not yet been filed on behalf of Akshay.

Singh told the bench, which also comprised Justices R Banumathi and Ashok Bhushan, that he has filed review pleas on behalf of convicts Pawan and Vinay Sharma but because of some exigencies in Akshay’s family, he could not file the same for him.

“This matter cannot go on like this. We cannot wait for you to file review petition for long,” the bench observed after which the council said he would soon file a review plea.

Senior advocate Siddharth Luthra, representing the Delhi Police, also told the bench that much time has gone by since the apex court’s May last year verdict.

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