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Court rejects plea to persuade Nirbhaya convicts to donate organs

New Delhi, Jan 10  : A Delhi Court dismissed a plea seeking permission to meet the four death row convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case to convince them to donate their organs.

While dismissing the plea filed by NGO RACO founder Rahul Sharma, Additional Sessions Judge Satish Kumar Arora said: “I am of the view that applicant has no locus to meet the convicts whatever reason there maybe. Therefore, jail authorities cannot be directed for any compliance.”

During the course of the hearing, the public prosecutor argued: “This is not legally sustainable as this 14-day period is only for exercising legal remedies, chanting religious chants.”

He said: “They have no locus in the present matter. If they really want this noble cause, they should contact their family members because they meet them frequently and, hence they can know the convict’s desire through the family.”

Opposing the claims, the applicant’s counsel said: “If we can’t meet them, then the state can ask them and let us know their wish regarding this noble cause.”

A Delhi Court had on Tuesday while issuing death warrants against the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case observed that “despite being afforded sufficient time and opportunity” the convicts didn’t exercise their legal remedies.

Additional Sessions Judge Satish Kumar Arora said: “It is apparent from the record, sufficient time and opportunity was given to the convicts to exercise and exhaust their remedies as available to them under the law. Either, the remedies have been exercised and exhausted by the respondents or have not been resorted to despite afforded sufficient time and opportunity.”

“In these given facts and circumstances when reasonable time and opportunity has been afforded to the convicts to exercise their remedies, there is nothing to delay any further in passing orders on the application seeking issuance of death warrants,” the court said.

The court has fixed January 22 and 7 a.m. as the date and time for the execution of the death warrant on the four convicted persons.

The 23-year-old Nirbhaya was gang raped and tortured on December 16, 2012, which led to her death. All the six accused were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder. One of the accused was a minor and appeared before a juvenile justice court, while another accused committed suicide in Tihar Jail.

Four of the convicts were sentenced to death by a trial court in September 2013, and the verdict was confirmed by the Delhi High Court in March 2014 and upheld by the Supreme Court in May 2017, which also dismissed their review petitions.