The 2012 Nirbhaya gang rape convicts will now face the gallows on 1 February at 6 a.m. (India time). The new date, necessitated due to two of the four convicts putting up mercy pleas before the president of India, was announced on Friday in a fresh death warrant.
Nirbhaya, or the fearless, is the name given to the Delhi gang rape victim.
A Delhi sessions court gave the fresh date for the execution hours after President Ram Nath Kovind rejected the mercy plea filed by Mukesh Singh, one of the four surviving convicts to be hanged in the case. The president had already rejected another convict's, Vinay Kumar, mercy plea in December.
They were earlier scheduled to be hanged on 22 January.
According to a senior lawyer, the convicts still have some legal options left to postpone the date of their execution.
Deceased gang rape victim Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi, however, said things are happening as per the convicts.
“They want the dates to be postponed and that is what is happening. Our system is such that it supports the victims”.
Dejected by the delay in hanging, she also blamed political leaders, accusing them for playing politics over the death of her daughter and delaying justice to her.
“People who held protests on streets in 2012, today the same people are only playing with my daughter's death for political gains”, Nirbhaya’s mother Devi said.
On Tuesday, two convicts, Mukesh Singh and Vinay Sharma, filed curative petitions in the Supreme Court of India. But the court dismissed both of the pleas, leading to their date of execution being slated for 22 January by a Delhi court. It was announced on 7 January.
The Nirbhaya gang rape case is related to a 2012 incident that occurred in a moving bus and involved six men who sexually assaulted a 23-year-old woman.
It happened on the night of 16 December 2012 in South Delhi's Munirka area. The crime, involving six men, triggered an outcry across India, with people coming out onto the streets, demanding safety and security for women.