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September 21, 2020

Nirbhaya convict’s plea seeking mental treatment rejected

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A Delhi court on Saturday dismissed an application filed by Vinay Sharma, one of the four death row convicts in Nirbhaya gang-rape case, seeking specialised medical treatment for claimed insanity. The court observed that general anxiety and depression are obvious for those on death row.

“General anxiety and depression in case of a death row convict are obvious. In the case at hand, evidently adequate medical treatment and psychological help have been provided to the condemned convict,” additional sessions judge Dharmender Rana observed in the order. The court said that it did not find any occasion to refer the convict to Institute for Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences or any other hospital.


“It is evident that convict is not only being provided regular medical care but regular supportive therapy sessions are being conducted for him by specialist psychiatrist. I do not have any plausible reasons to disbelieve the report of two responsible medical experts,” the order read.

“I have also seen the CD provided by the jail authorities wherein the convict is seen conversing with his counsel and family members. The apparent tone and tenor of the convict is not suggestive of any abnormal behaviour, rather it convincingly corroborates the opinion of the medical experts,” it added.

The court, while dismissing the application for want of merits, also directed the Jail Superintendent to ensure adequate care of the convicts as per rules.

Earlier today, the court had reserved its order in the matter after hearing arguments from both sides.

Vinay Sharma, through his lawyer, had filed an application seeking specialised medical treatment after he allegedly sustained a “grievous head injury, fracture in his right arm, insanity, mental illness and schizophrenia”.

“At the time of a legal meeting between counsel and convict, and family meeting with the convict, it was a very serious matter that the convict, Vinay Sharma, could not identify his counsel and mother in jail,” the application had said.

Meanwhile, a fresh death warrant has been issued for the four death row convicts — Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur, Pawan Gupta, and Mukesh Singh — in the 2012 Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case for their hanging at 6 am on March 3.

The case pertains to the brutal gang-rape and killing of a 23-year-old paramedical student in a moving bus on the night of December 16, 2012, by six people including a juvenile in Delhi. The woman had died at a Singapore hospital a few days later.

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