New Delhi : The four men who gang-raped, tortured and threw a Delhi student out of their moving bus in Dec 2012 urged Supreme Court to spare them death sentence as capital punishment according to them was “cold-blooded killing in the name of justice”.
The court reserved its verdict on Friday and will decide on the convicts’ petition questioning death penalty.
Two accused, Vinay Kumar and Pawan Kumar also implored that they were “young and from poor families”.. The Public Prosecutor rebutted the argument.
Then their lawyer AP Singh claimed they were “not habitual offenders and has no criminal history, so court must allow them to reform”.
Singh went on to say death penalty was abolished in several countries. Execution kills criminals not crime, he continued, to which the Chief Justice Dipak Misra reminded “Death penalty exists in the statute”.
The convicts further claimed discrepancies in Nirbhaya’s dying statements and said she never named the accused.
Public prosecutor stalled the arguments saying all points were taken during the arguments before the Supreme Court confirmed death sentence in May 2017.
The Nirbhaya Case
On Dec 16, 2012 a 23-year-old paramedic student who boarded a private bus with a friend was gang-raped by six men in the moving bus. His male friend was beaten up and both were thrown out in semi-nude condition.
The incident sparked nationwide protests.
Police identified and arrested four accused initially – the bus driver Ram Singh, his brother Mukesh, Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta.
Nirbhaya gave her dying testimony and breathed her last 16 days later at a hospital in Singapore.
Her friend also recorded his version.
Later, the juvenile delinquent and other fugitive identified as Akshay Thakur was also nabbed.
Following the brutal rape that shocked the nation, Chief Justice Altmas Kabir brings in fast-track court for quick trial of sexual offences.
Fast track court begins with in-camera proceedings and finds the gang comprising Mukesh, Vinay, Akshay and Pawan guilty on 13 counts including gangrape and murder.
All four are sentenced to death and the juvenile is directed to correction centre.