The Allahabad High Court on Friday stayed the execution of Surinder Koli till November 25. He was convicted and awarded the death sentence in a case in connection with the 2005 Nithari killings of Noida.
A division bench of Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice Pradeep Kumar Singh Baghel passed the order on a petition filed by People’s Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR), seeking commutation of death sentence of Koli to life imprisonment on the ground that there has been a considerable delay in executing the sentence.
It sought replies from the state and the Centre by November 21 and posted the matter for final hearing on November 25. A detailed order was not yet available.
However, confirming the development, chief standing counsel Ramesh Upadhyaya, who represented the state government, confirmed that the state and the Centre have been asked to furnish their replies by November 21 and the matter would then be taken up for hearing on November 25.
Smriti Kartikeya, counsel for the petitioner, said: “We had mentioned the matter before the court at 10 am. It was taken up around noon. The court has sought replies from the state and Centre on our contention that there has been a delay of three years and three months in executing the death sentence awarded to Koli.”
Koli had been convicted of killing minor girls and women at the house of his employer, Moninder Singh Pandher, in Noida. The cases were reported in 2005.
While his mercy petition was rejected earlier, a review petition on Koli’s conviction was filed in the Supreme Court in September. The Supreme Court had stayed the execution till the pendency of the petition, which was rejected on October 28, clearing the decks for the state authorities to go ahead with Koli’s execution.