The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a plea by Nithari murder case convict Surinder Koli to reconsider the death penalty awarded to him in one of the cases. Koli’s plea had put forward a new theory that a doctor engaged in organ trade in the area was the real killer and not him.
Koli has the last legal remedy of filing a curative petition. With the dismissal of his review petition, the stay on his death penalty also stands vacated and he would require to get a fresh restrain order on his execution.
“We are fully satisfied that this court has not committed any error, whatsoever, which will compel us to review the judgment. We reject the review petition. No grounds have been made to persuade us to reconsider the earlier decision,” a bench led by Chief Justice H L Dattu said.
The bench, however, took note of a submission by senior advocate Ram Jethmalani, who appeared pro bono (without professional fee) for Koli and asked the sessions court judges to prefer appointing experienced lawyers as legal aid counsel for those who could not afford engaging lawyers owing to financial difficulties.
Jethmalani had said Koli was never provided a good lawyer during his trial and that the legal aid counsel given to him were novices who could not care less about the merits of the case.
Jethmalani had sought reconsideration of the verdict saying Koli was “innocent” and the real killer was a doctor, residing in the neighbourhood in Noida Sector 31 house, where Koli was employed as a domestic help. He said the doctor indulged in illegal organ trade and went scot-free because the prosecution suppressed a crucial document from the trial court.
According to Jethmalani, an autopsy report stated that the killing of 16 children had been carried out by an expert with utmost precision. He said this report was neither produced during trial nor was the autopsy surgeon examined.
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