The Supreme Court stay on execution of the death sentence of Veerappan associates lodged in Belgaum jail and its decision to hear the review petition has raised the hopes of their families.
Veerappan’s wife Muthulakshmi, relatives and friends of the victims held mass prayers for their release.
Muthulakshmi, activists of Dalit Liberation Party and others staged protests near Bannari in Sathyamanagalam taluk on the Karnataka-Tamil Nadu border. She said that the four convicted in the Palar bomb blast case are innocent and that they were not associated with Veerappan. She said that they have sought an appointment with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa to appeal to her to intervene and ensure justice.
Meanwhile, the Belgaum Jail authorities who were in the city law courts to get the day and date of execution returned empty handed as the Supreme Court stayed the execution for two days.
However, Jail Deputy Superintendent C R Thallur, who had visited the court as they had received fax from SC on February 15, refused to speak to the media.
Punish Guilty: Parimala
Parimala Nagappa, wife of former minister Nagappa, who was abducted and killed in Veerappan’s hideout, said that the guilty should be punished and law should take its own course. Clarifying that the four accused in Belgaum jail had no role in her husband’s abduction, she said that those involved in the abduction were acquitted. She added that her family is not aware of the fate of people involved in Nagappa’s abduction from her farm house in Kamagere village.
Rejection of Mercy Petitions Condemned
Condemning the rejection of mercy petition by President Pranab Mukherjee, People’s Union for Civil Liberties national general secretary V Suresh termed it as unconstitutional, unfair and arbitrary. “All four convicts are in the age group of 60-70 years and have been in jail for the last 18 years. Their conduct has been exemplary,” he stated.