- Jasbir and Vikram Singh, along with the former’s wife Sonia, had been awarded death sentence by a Hoshiarpur court in September 2005 after they were found guilty of kidnapping and then murdering Abhi Verma (16) for ransom in February 2005.
- They had demanded a ransom of Rs 50 lakh from Abhi’s goldsmith father Ravi Verma. Abhi was injected with chloroform and fortwin in heavy doses after tying his both hands and legs and sealing his mouth with a tape to prevent detection of offence.
|A file photo of the Patiala Central Jail where Jasbir Singh and Vikram Singh have been kept under tight security.|
- The trial court had on September 3, 2005, convicted the trio under Sections 302 (murder), 364-A (kidnapping for ransom), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of offence) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code and sentenced all of them to death.
- Later, the High Court had on May 30, 2008, confirmed the death sentence awarded to the three accused. The convicts filed an appeal in the Supreme Court, which on January 25, 2010, upheld the death sentence in case of Vikram and Jasbir. However, Sonia’s death sentence was commuted to life sentence.
- Following this, the duo moved another petition in the High Court challenging the legality of convicting them under Section 364-A of the IPC. However, the HC Bench rejected their petition, after which they were handed death warrants, which were to be executed on October 5, 2012.
- They moved the Supreme Court and the death warrants were stayed till October 12, 2012. In between, they moved a mercy petition before the President of India and the execution was delayed.
- The President of India returned their plea asking them to approach the Punjab Governor. In 2013, the Punjab Governor dismissed their plea and they again moved a plea before the President of India, who dismissed their plea in August this year.
- The matter was again taken up in the Hoshiarpur Sessions Court and on September 27, the court re-issued their death warrants, which are now to be executed on October 25 at 9 am on the premises of the Patiala Central Jail.