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Bilkis Bano case: SC grants Gujarat government two weeks to respond; requests comments from the convicts

Supreme Court attorney Rishi Malhotra said that the Center had given its approval in accordance with the law for the early release from prison of 11 individuals convicted in the 2002 case of the gang rape and family members’ murder of riot survivor Bilkis Bano. Malhotra claimed the Centre had provided its consent in accordance with the Gujarat government’s remission programme, under which they were released after serving more than 15 years in prison. Malhotra represents these 11 convicts before the Supreme Court, where their release has been contested. The trial court gave life sentences to each of them. When asked if the Center had granted its consent as required by the rules for a sentence reduction, Malhotra responded, “Yes, absolutely.” Please record my statement: “I am saying this with full responsibility that the Centre government concurrence as needed by law was taken,” Malhotra stated. 

Three weeks have passed since Bench posts the issue. Unknown exact date to be updated following order upload. In order to receive instructions for other respondents, Mr Rishi Malhotra presents for one of the resp. To be served with a copy of the petition. Attorneys for the State of Gujarat were given a copy of the petition. Notice is given in the other petitions and the bench orders that copies be given to the respondents.

State’s attorney: I object to this accusation business. Furthermore, they lack locus. They are only increasing the number of petitions and impleadment applications in each case. Notice is given in the other petitions and the bench orders that copies be given to the respondents. Convicts’ attorneys claim that copies of the impleading petitions were not provided. Impleading petition, according to the attorneys for released convicts, was only submitted yesterday.

The bench noted that the SC had not mandated the release but had just given the state government permission to consider remission in accordance with its own policies. After serving more than 15 years in prison, the 11 were freed from Godhra jail on July 1. The Supreme Court has given a time of two weeks to the Gujrat Governm

Ahir Mitra
Ahir Mitra
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