President of India, Mr. Pranab Mukherjee rejected five more mercy petitions between 25th and 26th May, 2017. With his current rejections, he has achieved 42 rejections and seven acceptances of mercy petitions during his tenure. There has been marked increase in rejections of mercy petitions in recent years, especially, after Mr. Pranab Mukherjee assumed office in 2012, former Presidents have chosen to exercise “pocket veto” i.e., delaying the Presidential assent on the recommendation than rejecting petitions.
11 May 2017
On 5th May, 2017 the Supreme Court upheld the High Court judgement giving death penalty to the four accused in the ‘Nirbhaya’ case ie the brutal gang rape and murder of Jyoti Singh on December 16, 2012. The trial and conviction of the guilty in a time bound manner within four and a half years, is a welcome step in the context of the frequent denials of justice to victims of sexual assault.
28 Jul 2015
After the Supreme Court rejected Yakub Memon’s curative petition on 21st July 2015, Memon has filed a mercy petition before the Governor and also a validity plea before the apex court. Many believe that he is cleverly using the system to buy time. Against those who are baying for his blood, it is important to remember that there are, arguably, very good reasons why he should not be hanged:
20 Jul 2015
On 15th July, the Maharashtra government announced that it has initiated the process for hanging Yakub Memon. On 30th July, 2015 ‘he is to be hung by the neck till dead’. The announcement seemed inevitable after the Supreme Court had rejected his review petition on 10th April this year. Except that Yakub Memon has still not exhausted all legal remedies as he has a curative petition due to be heard in the Supreme Court on 21st July.
13 Jul 2015
The irreversibility of death penalty, and the likelihood of innocents being executed by the Judiciary, is one of the strongest arguments for abolishing capital punishment. Dhananjoy Chatterjee today joins the list of persons where clear evidence exists that they were erroneously handed death penalty by the Indian judicial system.