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Report No. 262

(v) Mercy Petition Rejected Without Access to Relevant Records of the Case: The Case of Praveen Kumar's Writ [Writ Petition (Crl.) No. 187/2013] was considered in the batch matter Shatrughan Chauhan v. Union of India, (2014) 3 SCC 1. See paras 139-141 for the outcome in the Writ Petition(Crl.) No. 187/2013.

6.6.10 Even though Rule V of the Mercy Petition Rules specifically requires that the entire record be sent to the Central Government when it is deciding the mercy petition, and even though the Guidelines used by the Ministry of Home Affairs clearly requires the close scrutiny of the record, in many cases it has been found that the Central Government has rejected a convict's mercy petition without reading or obtaining the trial court record.

6.6.11 For example, in Praveen Kumar's case, the Supreme Court found that his mercy petition had been rejected by the Central Government and the President without reading or obtaining the record of the trial court. Consequently, no attention at all was paid to the mitigating circumstances in this case or the circumstances relating to the convict which are necessary for adjudication of mercy petitions as per the Ministry of Home Affairs' guidelines.

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