The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea by Mukesh Kumar Singh, one of the four death row convicts in the 2012 Delhi gangrape and murder case, against the rejection of mercy petition by President Ram Nath Kovind on 17 January.
Another convict Akshay Kumar has filed his curative petition in the apex court challenging the death warrant order.
A bench of Justices R Banumathi, Ashok Bhushan and A S Bopanna said relevant record, verdict of lower courts and apex court in the case were placed before the President. Suffering in prison cannot be a ground to grant mercy, the bench added.
Senior counsel Anjana Prakash, representing Singh, had on Tuesday claimed there were procedurals lacunas in the case. Prakash said the mercy petition was rejected shortly after the curative petition and due consideration was not given to the mercy plea.
She said not all necessary documents were considered or given to the President.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said all necessary documents were placed before the President, including the medical report certifying the convict’s fitness. He said allegations of sexual abuse and solitary confinements were not valid grounds to grant mercy.
The execution of death sentence for the four convicts in the case has been fixed for 1 February at 6am.
Singh had moved the mercy plea after the Supreme Court dismissed his curative petition against his conviction and death sentence. The apex court had earlier rejected the curative petitions of death row convicts Mukesh Kumar Singh and Vinay Kumar Sharma.
The other convict Pawan Gupta is yet to file curative petition before the Supreme Court.
While hearing the appeal against the rejection of mercy petition of Mukesh Kumar Singh, Chief Justice of India SA Bobde had said, "Execution case will be given top priority."
On 16 December 2012, the 23-year-old woman was brutally assaulted and raped by six persons in a moving bus in south Delhi, an incident which triggered nationwide protests. She died from her injuries on 29 December at Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore.