Women’s panel seeks CJI intervention over rape-murder convict’s penalty

Bombay high court converts death penalty to life after delay, Commission says that’d be injustice to victim

geetanjali

Geetanjali Minhas | December 14, 2019 | Mumbai


#Maharashtra State Commission for Women   #Supreme Court   #Bombay high court   #law   #society   #gender   #rape  
(Illustration: Ashish Asthana)
(Illustration: Ashish Asthana)

The Maharashtra State Commission for Women has urged the chief justice of India to take suo moto action in the matter of the Bombay high court converting to life imprisonment the death sentence of the two persons convicted for the brutal rape and murder of a Pune BPO executive in 2008.

Challenging the high court judgment of July 29, 2019 on grounds of “procedural irregularity”, the commission has requested its recall by the apex court.

On November 1, 2007, a 22-year-old woman working in a reputed BPO company in Pune was raped and murdered by a cab driver named Purshottam Borate (38) and his friend Pradeep Kokade (32).They were sentenced to death by the Pune sessions court in 2012. This order was upheld by the Bombay high court on September 25, 2012 and later also by the supreme court on May 8, 2015. A mercy petition of the convicts was turned down by the Maharashtra Governor and later also by the then President of India, Pranab Mukherjee, in 2017.

As for four years, one month and six days, from May 8, 2015 till June 24, 2019, the death sentence was not executed, the accused filed a writ petition before the high court on July 20. The high court upheld on July 29 that the delay of 1,507 days on part of the administration is “unavoidable / unconstitutional” and it converted the death penalty into life imprisonment.

“After 8.5.2012 the sentence of death ought to have been executed within 90 days. Commutation of death penalty into life imprisonment only on the ground of delay caused by the administration is miscarriage of justice towards the victim. Commutation of death sentence into life imprisonment by Bombay high court judgment is wrong when the mercy petition of the accused was rejected by the President of India,” Vijaya Rahatkar, chairperson of commission, told Governance Now.  

The issue of authority of the high court in quashing death sentence of whose mercy petitions are rejected under Article 72 of the Constitution of India is pending in Union of India vs. Sonu Sardar - SLP (Cri) no. 008357 -008357/2017, says her letter addressed to the chief justice of India, SA Bobde. It also cites the case of Shatrughan Chavan vs. Union of India and Others wherein it was held that unnecessary delay caused in execution of death penalty can lead to commutation of same only by the Supreme Court.

The commission says that high court has gone ultra vires in commuting death sentence. “Such arbitrary commutation would be abrogation of rights and gross miscarriage of justice towards the victim. The judgment is not only miscarriage of justice but it has also caused huge social discontent,” Rahatkar writes in her letter.

Comments

 

Other News

Why is Lanka in flames: the making of a crisis

This time it was not Lord Hanuman, but the poor decision-making of the political leaders combined with several global economic factors that set Sri Lanka in flames. A state of emergency was declared in Sri Lanka. This month, after the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka resigned from his post, the

Growing Up as a Multilinguist

Being and Becoming Multilingual: Some Narratives Edited by Rajesh Sachdeva and Rama Kant Agnihotri

Mumbai civil body refutes allegations of scam in tenement scheme

The BrihanMumbai municipal corporation (BMC) has rejected the Congress accusations of financial irregularities worth Rs 8,000 crore—9,000 croe in awarding contracts for getting project-affected people (PAP) tenements on private land.    BMC has said that it implements vital p

Sedition law: Can it have a place in democracy?

Does the concept of sedition have a place in modern democracies? This question became more relevant when the apex court recently put the country`s colonial-era sedition law on abeyance stating that there is a “requirement to balance… security interests and integrity of the State… and th

Not just another Manto anthology

The Collected Stories of Saadat Hasan Manto: Volume 1: Bombay and Poona Translated by Nasreen Rehman Aleph Book Company, 548 pages, Rs 999 There are writers, there are writers’ writers, and then there are readers’ writers. Saadat Hasan Mant

These tribal women may be illiterate but are successful entrepreneurs

Meet Promila Krishna, 39, Lalita Nayak, 40, Parbati Gadba, 42, Sanadei Dhuruwa, 39, and Nabita Barika, 41, of Kundra block in Odisha’s Koraput district. Except for Promila who is a matriculate, others haven’t attended school beyond the elementary level. However, while introducing themselves to

Visionary Talk: Arvind Sawant, Member of Parliament with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now


Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter