|Justice NV Ramana, Justice Mohan M. Shantanagoudar and Justice S. Abdul Nazeer|
"Throughout the period of deciding his mercy petition by the President, he was kept in solitary confinement in various jails. Solitary confinement prior to the disposal of the mercy petition is per se illegal and amounts to separate and additional punishment not authorized by law… …. Thus, solitary confinement prior to the rejection of mercy petition, which has taken place in spite of various decisions of this Court to the contrary, is unfortunate and palpably illegal. In the present case, the Respondent underwent such a long period of solitary confinement that too, prior to his mercy petition being rejected, thereby making it a formidable case for commuting his death sentence into life imprisonment, as rightly held by the High Court"
On receipt of a mercy petition, the Department concerned has to call for all the records and materials connected with the conviction. When the matter is placed before the President, it is incumbent on the part of the concerned authority to place all the materials such as judgments of the courts, as well as any other relevant material connected with the conviction.