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SC issues notice to Gujarat govt, Centre on plea challenging remission to 11 convicts in Bilkis Bano case


The Supreme Court on Thursday sought responses from the Centre and the Gujarat government on a plea challenging the remission granted to 11 life convicts in the case of Bilkis Bano’s gangrape and murder of her family members.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana issued notice to the Centre and the state government on the plea and asked the petitioners to implead those who have been granted remission as parties in the matter. The apex court also posted the matter for hearing after two weeks.

The remission and consequent release of 11 convicts on August 15 this year from the Godhra sub-jail under the Gujarat government’s remission policy has sparked a debate on the issue of such relief in heinous cases.

The plea in the apex court has been filed by CPI(M) leader Subhashini Ali, journalist Revathy Laul and activist Roop Rekha Rani.

The 11 convicts walked out of the Godhra sub-jail on August 15 after the Gujarat government allowed their release under its remission policy. They had completed more than 15 years in jail.

Bilkis Bano was 21 years old and five months pregnant when she was gangraped while fleeing the violence that broke out after the Godhra train burning. Among those killed was her three-year-old daughter.


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