SC judge faints while dictating order on hanging of Nirbhaya convicts

Justice Banumathi later regains consciousness and was taken to her chamber by the court staff

R Banumathi
A top court bench comprising Justice R Banumathi had earlier in the day dismissed a plea of one of the convicts | Photo: Facebook

A Supreme Court judge fainted in the courtroom on Friday (February 14) while dictating the order on the Centre’s plea seeking separate hanging of convicts in the 2012 Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case. Justice R Banumathi later regained consciousness and was taken to her chamber by other judges on the dais and other staff of the court.

The judge was taken on a wheelchair for medical treatment. Justice AS Bopanna, while rising, said that the order in the matter will be passed in-chamber. Justice Ashok Bhushan was also part of the three-judge bench hearing the matter.

A top court bench, which comprised of Justice Banumathi, had earlier in the day dismissed one of the convicts’ plea challenging rejection of his mercy petition by the president. In his plea, convict Vinay Sharma had alleged his mercy petition was rejected in a “mala fide” manner.

Related news: Of 2,328 convicts awarded death penalty, only 4 executed: NCRB data

The bench said no ground of judicial review of rejection of mercy petition is made out by Sharma. All material including Sharma’s medical report were placed before the president who applied his mind in rejection of mercy plea, the apex court said.

The top court rejected the contention of Sharma that he is mentally ill and said his medical report suggests he is stable. The trial court had on January 31 stayed “till further orders” execution of the four convicts in the case — Mukesh Kumar Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Kumar Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar (31).

(With inputs from agencies)

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