SC refuses to hear Veerappan's aides plea against execution

Veerapan

The Supreme Court today refused urgent hearing on the plea of four aides of sandalwood smuggler Veerappan seeking stay of execution of their death penalty reportedly fixed for tomorrow, saying there was no proof about it.

The matter was mentioned before Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir but he did not give a hearing to it, said a staff from his office when contacted.

Senior advocate Colin Gonsalves, who had mentioned the matter at the CJI's residence, said the Chief Justice did not hear the matter this evening on the ground that there was no proof that execution will take place tomorrow.

He said the CJI told him that the matter will be taken up for hearing in due course.

Gonsalves and his associate advocate Samik Narain said they approached the apex court after getting information that the execution of death penalty will take place tomorrow.

"Now we are hoping that the execution will not take place tomorrow," they said, adding that they will again mention the matter before the court on Monday.

Veerappan's elder brother Gnanaprakash, Simon, Meesekar Madaiah and Bilavendran were awarded death sentence in 2004 in connection with a landmine blast at Palar in Karnataka in 1993 in which 22 police personnel were killed.

Their mercy petition was rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee on February 13.

The four convicts are lodged in a jail in Belgaum in Karnataka.

A TADA court in Mysore had in 2001 sentenced them to life term which was enhanced to death sentence by the apex court.

Gang leader Veerappan was killed in an encounter with the Tamil Nadu police in October 2004.

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