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4 convicts for 2012 gang rape can’t be hanged on Jan 22, says Delhi judge citing jail rules

The four men sentenced to death for the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old in 2012 cannot be executed on January 22, a Delhi judge ruled on Thursday on a request by one of the convicts to put his execution on hold.

The judge put off the case after hearing the state and the convict’s lawyer for nearly an hour, ruling that the law was clear that there should be a 14-day gap between the rejection of a death-row convict’s mercy petition and his execution.

Mukesh Singh, one of the four who was convicted for the gang rape and murder of the paramedic student on a cold December night, had petitioned the court to stay the death warrant signed by a court that ordered Tihar jail authorities to hang him at 7 am on January 22.

Lawyer Vrinda Grover, who represented Mukesh Singh, told the judge that Tihar officials had flouted the law that requires prison officials to report the receipt of a mercy petition to the court that issues the death warrant.

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