The Centre on Friday recommended to President Ram Nath Kovind rejection of mercy plea of one of the convicts in the 2012 Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case.

The Ministry of Home Affairs has sent the file of mercy plea of 2012 gangrape convict Vinay Sharma to the President, recommending rejection of the same.

This came on a day when President Kovind, at an event in Rajasthan’s Sirohi, had considered women safety as a serious issue. In his address, the President had said that rape convicts under POCSO Act should not have the right to file mercy petition while adding that the Parliament should review mercy petitions.

Earlier on Sunday, the Delhi government had “strongly recommended” the rejection of the mercy petition filed by one of the convicts of the 2012 Nirbhaya murder case.

On the recommendation, Delhi Home Minister Satyendar Jain said this was a case where exemplary punishment should be given to deter others from committing such atrocious crimes.

“This is the most heinous crime of extreme brutality committed by the appellant. This is the case where exemplary punishment should be given to deter others from committing such atrocious crimes. There is no merit in the mercy petition, strongly recommend for rejection,” Jain wrote on the review petition of Vinay Sharma.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said his government has recommended the President to not show any leniency to the culprits in the case. Kejriwal told reporters that his government believes that culprits should get such stringent punishments that people think 10 times before committing such crimes.

The petition was forwarded to the state government after the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court rejected it, saying “he does not deserve any mercy”.

The rape and murder victim’s mother Asha Devi on Monday welcomed Delhi government’s decision to recommend rejection of mercy petition of one of the convicts in the case. She also expressed hope that the accused will be hanged to death soon.

A 23-year-old woman was gangraped and tortured on December 16, 2012, which led to her death. All the six accused were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder. One of the accused was a minor and appeared before a juvenile justice court, while another accused committed suicide in Tihar Jail. Four of the convicts were sentenced to death by a trial court in September 2013, and the verdict confirmed by the Delhi High Court in March 2014 and upheld by the Supreme Court in May 2017, which also dismissed their review petition in July 2018.

Nirbhaya’s parents had last month approached the Patiala House Court to expedite the procedure for the hanging of the four rapists, as the two judges hearing the case earlier were transferred.

On October 31, the Tihar Jail administration had issued a notice to the convicts in the case stating the death penalty would be executed in seven days if they don’t challenge it through a mercy plea.