Uttar Pradesh government has returned the mercy petition of former state minister Amarmani Tripathi and his wife Madhumani, serving life term after being convicted in poetess Madhumita Shukla’s murder case, citing jurisdiction. The government turned down the petition following the opinion of Law Department which said that since they were sentenced by a Uttarakhand court, the mercy plea should be filed in the concerned state.
Gorakhpur district jail’s senior superintendent SK Sharma told The Indian Express that he has forwarded the mercy petition to Uttarakhand Prisons Department. Amarmani and his wife, both housed in Gorakhpur jail and at present admitted at BRD Medical College for treatment, had filed mercy petition in August last year citing ill health and their responsibilities towards their family, including two daughters and a son who are unmarried.
The couple and two others were convicted and awarded the sentence by Dehradun district court in 2007 where the trial was transferred from UP following a Supreme Court directive. Amarmani and Madhumani were transferred to Gorakhpur jail as they had some cases pending in the court here. Amarmani had moved a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court, which was rejected in July last year.
On Wednesday, Madhumita’s younger sister Nidhi Shukla sent an application to UP Governor requesting to reject the couple’s mercy petition. She was unaware about the petition turned down by UP government. When asked, she said, “I will approach Uttarakhand Governor as well if Amarmani moves the petition there. Amarmani has a long criminal history and our family’s life would be in danger if he comes out.”
The Samajwadi Party had given the ticket to Tripathi’s son Amanmani from Nautanva in 2012 Assembly elections, but he had lost.
Madhumita was shot dead in Lucknow on May 9, 2003. Then chief minister Mayawati had expelled Amarmani from the cabinet and her party after his name emerged as key accused in the case. The investigation in the case was transferred to CBI, which arrested Amarmani, his wife and other accused.