Nirbhaya case convicts-Mukesh Singh (32), Pawan Gupta (25), Vinay Sharma (26) and Akshay Kumar Singh (31) were sent to the gallows after much delay on Friday at 5:30 am. DCW Chief Swati Maliwal called the hanging of the four convicts a 'victory for the whole country' whereas people gathered outside the Tihar Jail chanted slogans of 'Long Live Nirbhaya' and 'Bharat Mata ki Jai'.
Nirbhaya's mother, Asha Devi who ran from pillar to post for getting justice for her deceased daughter said that after this decision women will feel safer. She further added that although justice was delayed, it was not denied. Here's the chain of events that led to this cathartic ending for all those Indians who took to the streets at the time:
- Dec 16,2012: 23 year-old paramedical student is brutally gang raped and assaulted by 6 men in a private bus and thrown out of a moving vehicle with her male friend. Both the victims are admitted to Safdarjung hospital.
- Dec 17,2012: Nation's anger erupts in the form of widespread protests. Accused identified by the police.
- Dec 18: Ram Singh and 3 other accused nabbed by the Delhi police.
- Dec 20: Victim's friend gives statement.
- Dec 21: Juvenile in the case nabbed from Anand Vihar ISBT, Delhi. Victim's friend identifies Mukesh as one of the accused in the case. Raids conductes in Bihar and Haryana to arrest the 6th accused, Akshay Kumar Singh.
- Dec 29: After 12 days of fighting for her life, the victim or 'Nirbhaya' succumbs to her injuries. Police add murder charge in FIR.
- January 2,2013: Then CJI, late Altamas Kabir inaugurates FTC (fast track court) for speedy trial in sexual offence cases.
- Sep 13: Court awards death penalty to all the 4 convicts
- March 13: HC upholds the death penalty of all the 4 convicts in the case.
- May 5,2017: SC upholds death penalty awarded to the 4 convicts and says that the case falls under the 'rarest of rare' category.
- Nov 8: Mukesh Singh files a review petition in the SC against the capital punishment awarded to him.
- Jul 9: Supreme court trashes the pleas of all the 3 convicts
- Feb 2019: In order to get death sentences issued for the convicts in the case, victim's parents move the Delhi court.
- Dec 10,2019: Akshay Kumar Singh, one of the convicts in the case files a review petition with the SC against the death penalty.
- Dec 18: Akshay's plea gets rejected. Delhi court directs Tihar jail authorities to issue notices to convicts to utilise the legal remedies left at their disposal.
- Jan 7,2020: Delhi court issues death warrants against the convicts for hanging on Jan 22 at 7 am in Tihar jail premises.
- Jan 14: SC junks curative petition of Vinay and Mukesh. Mukesh files mercy plea before President.
- Jan 17: Tihar jail authorities seek fresh date for hanging. Feb 1 at 6 am decided as the date and time of execution
- Jan 25: In an attempt to save himself, Mukesh moves SC against trashing of mercy plea.
- Jan 30: SC dismisses the curative petition filed by Akshay.
- Jan 31: SC quashes Pawan Gupta's plea that sought review of the rejection of Gupta's juvenility claim.
- Feb 5: HC dismisses Centre's plea against trial court order; says all 4 convicts have to be hanged together.
After repeated rounds of petitions being filed and rejected, the SC trashed the curative petition filed by Pawan Gupta on March 19 and held an unprecedented late night hearing on the case. Pawan Gupta's plea against the rejection of his second mercy petition was dismissed during this late night hearing. On March 20, all the four convicts in the case were hanged at 5:30 am.
(Edited with inputs from PTI)