Dec 16 gangrape: Citing Dhananjoy, Kasab, court rejects plea for leniency
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The death sentence of 25-year-old Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack found a mention in the verdict by a court here while sending the four convicts to gallows in the December 16 gangrape case by rejecting their plea for leniency on grounds of young age and clean antecedents.
While dismissing the plea of Mukesh (26), Akshay Thakur (28), Pawan Gupta (19) and Vinay Sharma (20), Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna said "the Supreme Court had repeatedly held that the young age of the accused is not a determinative factor by itself against the award of the death sentence. Rather, all the circumstances need to be taken together and proper weightage to be given to each circumstance," the court said and also added the Supreme Court has re-held the death sentence of Kasab despite the young age of the convict.
While Kasab was 25-year-old, the court also referred to another rape case from West Bengal in which Dhananjoy Chatterjee's leniency plea of young age of 25 was rejected by the apex court and he was hanged at the age of 34 years after his mercy plea was rejected by the President.
Both Kasab and Chatterjee were first-time offenders, the court noted while rejecting the plea of the December 16 convicts for a chance of reformation in view of clean antecedents.
The judge also stated that the four convicts, before committing the heinous crime, were involved in robbing a passneger in the same bus in which the ghastly incident had occurred, which "belies their claim of clean antecedents".
The judge also cited the Supreme Court judgements to reject their ground for leniency considering their socio-economic status and that they were under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.
"The socio-economic status of the convict or the convict being under any intoxication cannot be the determinative factors in sentencing," he said.
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