Soumya murder case: SC issues notice on plea of slain scribe’s mother challenging bail to 4 convicts

New Delhi, April 22 : The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to examine a plea filed by the mother of late journalist Soumya Vishwanathan — who was shot on Nelson Mandela Marg while returning from work in her car in 2008 — against the decision of the Delhi High Court to suspend the life sentence of four convicts in the case and grant them bail during the pendency of their appeals.

Issuing a notice, a bench of Justices Bela M. Trivedi and Pankaj Mithal sought the response of the Delhi Police and the four convicts in the matter – Ravi Kapoor alias Rajiv, Amit Shukla, Ajay Kumar, and Baljit Singh Malik alias Poppy – within four weeks.

In an order delivered on February 12, the Delhi High Court suspended the life sentence of the four convicts and ordered them to be released on bail till the pendency of appeals, noting that they have been behind bars for over 14 years.

In November last year, the Saket court sentenced the four convicts to life imprisonment, while the fifth convict, Ajay Sethi, was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment.

While convicting the accused, the court had said that the offence did not fall in the category of “rarest of rare” cases, thus refusing to grant the request for death penalty.

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