“My client has a right to seek a divorce from her husband."
The wife of one of the Delhi rape convicts has filed for divorce in Aurangabad, Bihar.
The court posted the matter for March 19, 2020, one day before the four convicts are hanged.
Punita Thakur, the wife of Akshay Thakur, stated that she does not want to live the life of a widow.
Even though Thakur was convicted, his wife maintains that he is innocent. She said:
“My husband is innocent. I want to be legally divorced before he is hanged.”
Mukesh Kumar Singh is Punita’s lawyer. He addressed the matter to media officials in Aurangabad:
“My client has a right to seek a divorce from her husband. That is why I have filed a plea in the family court.
“She has the right to seek divorce under Section 13(2)(II) of Hindu Marriage Act which says a woman can seek divorce if the husband has, since the solemnisation of the marriage, been guilty of rape, sodomy or bestiality.
“Yes, the woman can file for divorce if her husband has been convicted in a case of rape.”
On March 17, another convict, Mukesh Singh, sought for the death penalty to be made invalid. He claimed that he was not in Delhi on the day of the crime and further alleged that he was tortured inside Tihar Jail.
The plea was filed before Additional Sessions Judge Dharmendra Rana.
It stated that on December 16, 2012, Singh was not in Delhi at the time. It also claimed that he was arrested in Rajasthan and brought to Delhi on December 17.
The four convicts were set to be hanged on March 3 at Tihar Jail.
However, Pawan Gupta’s lawyer was heard by the court after it was revealed that he filed a mercy plea.
Fresh death warrants were issued on March 5, 2020, against the four convicts, Mukesh Singh, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Thakur.
The four men are set to be hanged on March 20, 2020.
The case involved a 23-year-old woman, who came to be known as Nirbhaya. She was assaulted and gang-raped on a moving bus. The young woman later died.
Six suspects were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder.
One suspect was a minor and had appeared before a juvenile court while another accused named Ram Singh allegedly committed suicide during the trial period.
The convicts have been using tactics to delay the hanging, which has already been postponed twice. They have even approached the international court and India’s Human Rights Commission.
The men even went to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), seeking a stay on the execution of their death sentence.
Legal experts have said that there is no chance of the death sentence being delayed any further as all formalities have been completed and the Delhi rape convicts have tried all legal measures.