Yakub Memon, convicted in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, on Thursday moved the Supreme Court challenging the death warrant for his execution on July 30.
On Tuesday, Memon had filed mercy petition to Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao . The move comes hours after the Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected his curative petition, the last legal remedy available to avoid execution of death sentence. A three judge bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu rejected Memon’s plea, saying that the grounds raised by him do not fall within the principles laid down by the apex court in 2002 for deciding curative petitions. Read: Amnesty slams Yakub Memon’s hanging in Mumbai blasts case.
Memon, in his plea, had claimed he was suffering from schizophrenia since 1996 and remained behind the bars for nearly 20 years. He had sought commutation of death penalty contending that a convict cannot be awarded life term and the extreme penalty simultaneously for the same offence. The apex court said, “The petitioner has raised certain grounds in the curative petition which would not fall within the principles laid down in the case of Rupa Ashok Hurra vs Ashok Hurra”
“Since none of the grounds stated in the curative petition would fall within the parameters indicated in the case of Rupa Ashok Hurra (Supra), the curative petition stands dismissed,” the bench, also comprising T S Thakur and A R Dave, said.
The apex court had on April 9 this year dismissed Memon’s petition seeking review of his death sentence which was upheld on March 21, 2013. President Pranab Mukherjee had earlier rejected his mercy petition in May 2014.
The Supreme Court, while upholding the death sentence to Memon, a chartered accountant by profession, on March 21, 2013, described him as the “driving spirit” behind the carnage that followed the communal riots of 1992.
The Supreme Court had also upheld the life sentence awarded to 23 others, including Yakub brother Essa, who was found guilty of conspiracy and allowing the use of his flat at Al-Hussaini building at Mahim for meetings to plan the blasts and storing arms and ammunition, and sister-in-law Rubina, who arranged finances and allowed her car to be used by terrorists for carrying co-conspirators, arms, ammunition and explosives.
Yakub was arrested on August 6, 1994 when he arrived at Delhi Airport from Khatmandu. He had claimed he felt remorse and wanted to surrender.