New Delhi: With just two days left for the execution of four convicts in the 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case, a Delhi court on Wednesday issued notice to Tihar authorities and police on their plea seeking a stay on the execution of death penalty. The court will hear the matter again on Thursday. Also Read - Nirbhaya Convict Moves HC Against Trial Court Order, Claims Not in Delhi At Time of Incident

While hearing the matter, Additional Sessions Judge Dharmendra Rana issued notices to the Tihar jail authorities and the police on the plea and said he will hear it on Thursday.

The development comes after the convicts moved the Delhi court seeking stay on the sentence of the death penalty on the grounds of pendency of various legal applications, appeals and second mercy plea. The four convicts in the Nirbhaya case are scheduled to be hanged on March 20, as per the death warrant.

On Tuesday, convict Akshay Singh had filed a second mercy petition before President Ram Nath Kovind. On the same day, another convict Pawan Gupta had also moved the Supreme Court with a curative petition against the dismissal of his review plea rejecting his juvenility claim.

Earlier in the day, the Delhi High Court reserved its order on a petition filed by one of the Nirbhaya convicts — Mukesh Singh — challenging the trial court’s order dismissing his plea seeking quashing of death penalty claiming that he was not in the city when the crime was committed.

After hearing the matter, a Bench of Justice Brijesh Sethi reserved the order. Advocate Rahul Mehra, the standing counsel of the state, opposed the plea and said it is a desperate attempt to stall the execution. He also said that the court should not fall prey to this attempt and Mukesh application deserved to be dismissed.

“What prevented them to tell about torture if he was facing it in jail. Mukesh could have written a letter to the competent authority about the torture,” Mehra submitted.

On Tuesday, a trial court in Delhi had also sent the matter to the Bar Council of India for appropriate sensitization observing that the conduct of the counsel for the convict needs to be brought to notice.