A Delhi court on Thursday issued a notice to Tihar jail after Vinay Sharma, one of the death row convicts in the Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case, moved the court seeking direction to the prison authorities to provide high-level medical treatment to him.
The Patiala House Court has sought a report on the same from the jail authorities and fixed the matter for further hearing on February 22.
The application, moved through his lawyer AP Singh, has mentioned that Vinay Sharma, 26, sustained a grievous head injury, fracture in the right arm and suffers from mental illness and schizophrenia. It has further asked the court to refer the convict to the Institute of Human Behaviour & Allied Sciences (IHBAS) in Delhi.
His lawyer also claimed that the convict has been unable to recognise people, including his mother.
Earlier, a Tihar jail official had stated that Vinay had attempted to hurt himself by banging his head against a wall in his cell, on February 16 following which he received minor injuries. A security personnel reportedly saw him and stopped him.
Earlier this week, the lawyer had told the court that he was on a “hunger strike” and his mental status was not good. “He is irritable and acts different from the other three convicts. His nature is different from the other three,” said officials quoted by PTI.
The latest development comes two days after the Supreme Court dismissed Vinay Sharma’s plea against the rejection of his mercy petition by the President.
Sharma had claimed in the apex court that President Ram Nath Kovind while rejecting his petition had not considered the ‘mental stability’ he suffered due to torture in jail.
The convict in his submission had claimed that all the relevant records including one pertaining to his mental illness had not been submitted to the President in his appeal.
The four convicts in the gangrape case — which triggered a massive nationwide protest in 2012 — have been exploring every legal option one by one to stretch the date of their hanging as much as they can.
This was the last legal option left out for Sharma as his review and curative petitions to the Supreme Court and mercy petition to the President had been exhausted.
The four convicts — Mukesh Singh, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur Singh and Pawan Gupta — are to be hanged at 6 am on March 3 after a trial court on Monday issued a fresh death warrant, the third one in less than two months.
The Patiala House Court had on January 31 deferred the hanging of four convicts in Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case — scheduled for February 1 — till further orders.
Earlier, according to a January 7 order, the convicts were to be hanged at 7 am on January 22.
The 23-year-old woman, who came to be known as Nirbhaya, was gangraped and tortured on December 16, 2012, in a moving bus 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.