Vinay Sharma, one of the four Nirbhaya case convicts lodged in Tihar Jail number 3, allegedly injured himself by hitting his head on the wall of his cell on Monday (February 17).
Jail authorities said the wardens in-charge of keeping an eye on the death row convicts managed to stop Sharma and took him to a hospital where he was given first aid and discharged.
Sources said Sharma had even tried to fracture his hand by sticking it between the grilles of the cell. AP Singh, Sharma’s counsel, claimed that the incident occurred on February 16 and the convict’s mother informed him the following day when her son refused to recognise her. Singh claimed that Sharma’s mental condition had become unstable since the fresh death warrant was issued.
However, jail officials said that no such indications were found during Sharma’s counselling. “He is in perfect health and responded positively to the psychometry tests conducted on him recently,” said an official.
A senior officer said that since the latest death warrant was issued, the four convicts had been behaving aggressively with the jail wardens and guards. There has been a stark change in their behaviour. Though their food habits are normal, Sharma and Mukesh Singh had refused meals and eaten after much convincing.
The four men have been kept on suicide watch. Wardens have been tasked to monitor the CCTV cameras installed in their well-lit cells round the clock. Guards have been placed outside their cells to keep a watch. Their interaction with other inmates have been made minimal so that no one develops sympathy for them.
Though they are allowed to meet their parents, sometimes they have refused to meet them. All efforts are being made to keep them mentally alert.
Sources said death row convicts sometimes act violently to cause injuries to themselves so that they can appeal for clemency. Jail officials said if a convict is found injured or underweight, the death penalty can be deferred till they turn fit.