By Muslim Mirror Desk
New Delhi : The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear the plea of a women’s organisation seeking directions to revoke the remission granted to 11 convicts, who had gang-raped Bilkis Bano and murdered her family members during the 2002 Godhra riots.
A bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and CT Ravikumar tagged the matter with the main petition pending before the apex court.
The plea was filed by the National Federation of India, whose General Secretary is Annie Raja, challenged the remission of sentence and the release of convicts in the case.
Earlier, the top court had posted on November 29 pleas challenging the decision of the Gujarat government to grant remission to the 11 convicts.
Gujarat government in its affidavit has defended remission granted to convicts saying they completed 14 years of sentence in prison and their “behaviour was found to be good”.
The State government said it has considered the cases of all 11 convicts as per the policy of 1992 and remission was granted on August 10, 2022, and the Central government also approved the ore-mature release of convicts.
The affidavit stated, “State government considered all the opinions and decided to release 11 prisoners since they have completed 14 years and above in prisons and their behaviour was found to be good.”
Gujarat government had granted remission to 11 convicts, who had gang-raped Bilkis Bano and murdered her family members during the 2002 Godhra riots.
The State government said that in a circular dated July 9, 1992, it had issued a policy for early releasing those prisoners who have completed 14 years of imprisonment which were imposed life imprisonment punishment.
The affidavit stated that the government of India conveyed its approval under section 435 of the CrPC for the premature release of 11 prisoners on July 11, 2022.
the 11 convicts, who were sentenced to life imprisonment, on August 15. All the 11 life-term convicts in the case were released as per the remission policy prevalent in
Gujarat at the time of their conviction in 2008.
In March 2002 during the post-Godhra riots, Bano was allegedly gang-raped and left to die with 14 members of her family, including her three-year-old daughter. She was five months pregnant when rioters attacked her family in Vadodara.