A three-judge newly constituted bench of the Supreme Courttoday rejected the plea filed by Yakub Abdul Razak Memon, the sole death row convict in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case. This virtually ends any hope for Memon who is scheduled to be hanged tommorow as per the death warrant issued on July 13.
The apex court in its order said that there is no procedural lapse in the hearing of the curative petition filed by Memon and no further hearings will be held in this matter.
And in more bad news for Yakub Memon, the Maharashtra governor Vidyasagar Rao has also rejected his plea for mercy.
Yakub Memon has already filed a fresh mercy petition before the President today. It is expected that a final decison will be taken by the President today itself, which is likely to pave way for the hanging tomorrow.
Earlier, the bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra, before rising for lunch recess, said it will pronounce the order today itself, if the counsel for the parties “cooperate”. The arguments will continue after the lunch break.
Senior advocate Raju Ramachndran, appearing for Memon, initiated arguments by referring to the separate, divergent orders passed by Justice A R Dave and Justice Kurian Joseph yesterday and said that the procedures established by the law have not been followed while deciding the curative petition of the convict.
Ramachandran said, “The judges, who were part of judicial process earlier, must be party to curative petition. It cannot be decided by judges who are strangers to the matters.”
He further said that besides the three senior most judges, the curative petition should have been circulated to the judges, if available, who had decided the criminal appeal and the review petition.
Senior advocates T R Andhyarujina and Anand Grover both supported the contention of Ramachandran and said that this death warrant is illegal and can not be executed tomorrow.
Attorney general Mukul Rohatgi, who is presently continuing his argument, said that the court should not forget the fact that it was the first terror attack at the heart of the country that had led to the death of 257 persons and several hundred injured.