The Punjab and Haryana High Court again deferred the hanging of murder convict Dharampal on Monday,this time shifting the execution date to October 28. In another developments in the case,the Haryana government on Monday submitted its reply to the petition filed by Dharampal seeking a stay on his hanging while the Centre produced the case records. The High Court,however,directed the Central government to file its reply. The case has been adjourned to October 28. The High Court had earlier stayed the hanging on April 11.
Dharampal was sentenced to death by the Supreme Court in 1999 for killing five members of the family of a girl he was charged with raping. The murders were committed while he was out on bail in 1993. Last month,the President had dismissed his mercy petition. He was slated to be hanged on April 15 but the high court had stayed his hanging.
Dharampal moved court challenging the death sentence,with his counsel Navkiran Singh,contending that there had been a considerable delay in the award of the death sentence and dismissal of his mercy petition. He wants his sentence commuted to life imprisonment. Navkiran had also contended that Dharampal was acquitted in the rape case,a fact,he said,was not brought to the Presidents knowledge when the latter was deciding on the mercy petition.