• President Pranab Mukherjee rejects mercy petitions of three more death-row convicts

    August 19, 2016

    The President of India, Mr Pranab Mukherjee on August 7, rejected the mercy petitions from three death-row convicts, Shabnam, Jasvir Singh and Vikram Singh. The information about these rejections was uploaded on the website of the President’s secretariat only today.

    Shabnam, along with her husband, Salim were co-accused in a murder case, that was tried against them on the allegations that they had committed murders of seven persons who were the members of Shabnam’s family during 14-15 April, 2008. Their death sentences were confirmed by the Supreme Court on May 15, 2015.

    Shabnam is currently lodged in Moradabad jail, while Salim is in Agra jail. Their only child, delivered by Shabnam in jail, has been given in adoption.
    Jasvir Singh and Vikram Singh, now in Patiala Central jail, were convicted and sentenced to death, for the murder of 16-year-old school boy, Abhi Verma, in 2005. The Supreme Court commuted Jasvir Singh’s wife, Sonia’s sentence to life term in the same case in January 2010.

    In August last year, a three-member Bench headed by Justice TS Thakur dismissed their appeal, challenging the validity of Section 364A of the IPC, that provides for death penalty for the crime of kidnapping someone for ransom.



    President Pranab Mukherjee’s tactics towards death row mercy pleas has always remained different from his predecessors. Although he might be seen as a stern president with no- nonsense approach, yet his bold move clearly suggests that criminals, who have committed heinous crime like these shall not be pardoned under the garb of mercy petition and escape justice. 

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