"Mukesh, Pawan, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur and Ram Singh along with a juvenile were accused of gang-rape and assault on a 23-year-old paramedical student inside a private bus. The victim and her friend were thrown out of the bus after the crime."
New Delhi, April 28 - The Supreme Court Monday extended its March 15 interim order staying execution of the death sentence of Mukesh and Pawan Gupta - two of the four convicts in Dec 16, 2012, Delhi gang rape case - and directed the matter be listed in July's second week for final hearing.
A bench of Justice B.S.Chauhan and Justice J. Chelameswar asked the Delhi government to place before it all the records in the case including that of the trial court along with their English translation.
The apex court April 7 had asked counsel M.L.Sharma, who is representing Mukesh and Pawan Gupta, to place before it the post-mortem report of the Singapore hospital where victim was treated and succumbed to her injuries.
A bench of Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai and Justice Shiva Kirti Singh at a special sitting on March 15 had stayed the execution of the death sentence of Mukesh and Pawan till March 31.
This was extended by Justice Chauhan and Justice Chelameswar by a week till April 7, again extended and now it stands extended till second week of July.
Mukesh and Pawan have contended that the prosecution's story that the victim's end came because of heavy bleeding on account of serious injuries to her intestines was not confirmed by the post-mortem report by the Singapore hospital.
They have contended that their trial was not free and fair, and the trial that started Jan 21, 2013, was under public/political pressure with object to hang the petitioners - and other accused people.
Describing the entire trial as miscarriage of justice, the petitioners have contended that their fundamental right - to have a counsel of their choice was violated as they were represented by a state-appointed advocate.
On March 13, the Delhi High Court bench of Justice Reva Khetrapal and Justice Pratibha Rani had upheld the death sentence of Mukesh and Pawan along with two other convicts.
Society's abhorrence to atrocious crimes perpetrated upon innocent and helpless victims has resulted in the death penalty being retained on the statute book to remind such criminals that human life is very precious and one who dares to take the life of others must lose his own life, the high court had said in its order.
Mukesh, Pawan, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur and Ram Singh along with a juvenile were accused of gang-rape and assault on a 23-year-old paramedical student inside a private bus. The victim and her friend were thrown out of the bus after the crime.
The victim died of grave intestinal injuries Dec 29, 2012 at Singapore's Mount Elizabeth Hospital.