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Yakub Memon hanged on 30th July 2015: Criminal jurisprudence in India particularly on death verdict is great!
After the Supreme Court rejected Yakub Memon's plea on the death warrant and said that the curative petition was not void, it was clear that he will be hanged on 30th July 2015 early morning. Technically the mercy petition to the Governor of Maharashtra and the second mercy petition to the President have no relevance, as those are applied after issue of a valid death warrant. If such a precedent is made, then a convicted person may continue third, fourth and so on, n numbers of mercy petitions delaying his execution for ever.

The Supreme Court's guidelines are that after a mercy petition is rejected, a death warrant must be issued, ensuring minimum 14 days of notice to the convicts. This was maintained as per law. Anyway both the Governor of Maharashtra and the President of India rejected the mercy petitions, post the SC verdict.

Here one thing must be remembered that, the government of Maharashtra has no authority to issue a death warrant. The same was issued by a TADA court, although terror apologists spread such a perception among people. As I have mentioned in my earlier article 'Terrorist attack in Gurudaspur and terrorist apologists' that the present terror apologists comprising politicians from non-BJP parties and some celebrities including ex-SC Judge Marakandeya Katju are supporting Yakub Memon, just to show their opposition to the Modi government.

The proof is that none of these so called eminent people appealed to the President for clemency, when President Pranab Mukherjee rejected the mercy plea of Yakub Memon on 11th April 2014. That time UPA-2 was ruling and the President must have worked on the advice of the UPA government, which thus proves the vested interest of these so called eminent people.

However, some are raising questions over the Supreme Court's delay in delivery of justice as well as admittance of Yakub's plea, even after the curative petition is rejected. The answer is simple and described as below.

Although the constitution makers  kept capital punishment valid in our criminal jurisprudence, they wanted that it should be awarded only in the rarest of rare crimes. The Supreme Court made further tough guidelines to ensure that a convict should explore all possible option to save his life, as capital punishment is irreversible. After the secret hanging of Afzal Guru, the Supreme Court ensured that the convict must be notified at least 14 days before his execution, along with information to the family members of the convict.

In this case also the TADA court issued death warrant as per SC guidelines. When a curative petition was filed, the Court accepted it. Heard both the sides and dismissed it. Then yet again, questions were raised regarding the validity of the death warrant and on the dismissal of the curative petition. The Supreme Court didn't make any stay on the execution date, but was still ready to hear it again. The two judge bench gave a split verdict, thus it was handed over to a three Judge bench. 

Knowing that the date of execution was on July 30, the SC fixed the hearing on July 29, without wasting a day. This means that the SC was satisfied with the TADA courts death warrant, yet it was ready to listen to both the sides again, as a last option of a chance explored by the convict. After hearing both sides, they up held the death sentence and rejected the curative petition.

This proves, how criminal jurisprudence in a death penalty is maintained with the highest respect to the provisions of the Constitution. India falls in a rare category, where even a convict of a heinous crime is given all possible rights. Thus, there can't be any questions on the SC's admittance of every possible plea of Yakub Memon. If you want that the SC shouldn't reconsider pleas after a death verdict, then what's the point in arresting a culprit? Shoot them in an encounter. This happens in many countries where culprits are not given enough scopes! But India is a sensible democracy and provides rights to even death sentence convicts. This should make us very proud, that our system is very sensible and humane.

Regarding the observation, that a person is being punished after 22 years of committing the crime; is a valid one. Yes that's a problem in the Indian judiciary system. But you can't blame the judiciary alone. Pace of judicial trials depends heavily on efficient investigation, competent and quality prosecution and a number of courts available to deal with the number of crimes happening.

I Hope that in the coming times, a lot of reforms will be done to address this problem.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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