[Nirbhaya] SC rejects curative petition challenging dismissal of juvenility plea by death row convict Pawan Kumar Gupta
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[Nirbhaya] SC rejects curative petition challenging dismissal of juvenility plea by death row convict Pawan Kumar Gupta

Bar & Bench

The Supreme Court today rejected the curative petition moved by death row convict in the Nirbhaya gang rape case, Pawan Kumar Gupta against the Court's earlier verdict rejecting his claim that he was a juvenile at the time of the offence.

A six-judge Bench comprising Justices NV Ramana, Arun Mishra, RF Nariman, R Banumathi, Ashok Bhushan and AS Bopanna has held

"The application for oral hearing is rejected. We have gone through the Curative Petition and the relevant documents. In our opinion, no case is made out within the parameters indicated in the decision of this Court in Rupa Ashok Hurra vs. Ashok Hurra & Another, reported in 2002 (4) SCC 388. Hence, the Curative Petition is dismissed."
Supreme Court

Read the Order:

Pawan Kumar Kupta v State NCT Delhi.pdf

The Bench of Justices R Banumathi, Ashok Bhushan, and AS Bopanna had earlier dismissed this plea in January this year.

At the time, the Court had said that while the law does provide for a plea of juvenility to be raised at any stage, the same provision cannot be used to re-agitate the issue repeatedly, especially when the issue has been decided on by all Courts up to the Supreme Court.

Pawan had raised the same claim of juvenility while preferring a separate curative petition challenging the confirmation of his death sentence as well.

He was the last of the four death row convicts in the case to file a curative petition, four days before the then scheduled date of execution (March 3). However, this petition was dismissed as well on March 2.

As per the latest death warrant issued in the case, Pawan and the three other death row convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape case are slated to be executed tomorrow morning.

Recently, the National Human Rights Commission had also rejected a plea to stay their execution.

Meanwhile, a Delhi court is slated to hear yet another plea to stay the execution at 12 noon today.

This plea has been made in view of various grounds including the pending "Second review mercy petition" by Pawan, his curative petition with respect to his plea of juvenility (which has now been dismissed) and a criminal complaint by Pawan against Tihar Jail security personnel for beating him in jail.

An appeal made to stay the execution of the four convicts has also been made before the International Court of Justice recently, which has also been cited as a ground before the Patiala House Court.

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