Yakub Memon controversy: 40 eminent personalities including Shatrughan Sinha file new mercy petition


Senior BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha and actor Naseeruddin Shah are among 40 eminent personalities who have signed a fresh mercy petition asking President Pranab Mukherjee to stay the execution of 1993 Mumbai serial blasts convict Yakub Memon.

Memon is set to be executed on Thursday, July 30 as per the execution warrant issued by the TADA Court.

The petition has reportedly been signed by retired judges, social activists and also several politicians along with people from the film industry. Some of the top such names include senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani, Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyer, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury, senior lawyer and former minister Prashant Bhushan, senior journalist N.Ram, filmmakers Anand Patwardhan and Mahesh Bhatt.

“We, the undersigned, through this petition urge Your Excellency to stay the imminent execution so that the substantive and fresh grounds raised herein can be considered on merits,” the petition states.

“Yakub Memon has been suffering from schizophrenia for the last 20 years which makes him unfit for execution. His mental condition has been certified by jail doctors. Schizophrenia as a mental illness has been held by the Supreme Court (Shatrughan Chauhan v. Union of India, (2014) 3 SCC 1 para 86-87) to render a convict unfit for execution. Your Excellency is required to consider the mental health of a convict before deciding his mercy petition, and can summon his medical records from the prison from the time of his arrest,” the petition released by CPM reads.

A huge controversy had recently been created in the Yakub Memon issue when Bollywood superstar Salman Khan appeared to have supported the terrorist through tweets asking for his brother Tiger to be implicated instead. Salman later retracted from his tweets and apologised for any potential misunderstanding while sticking to his stand.

As per the case of the prosecution, the 1993 Mumbai blasts were orchestrated by Tiger Memon and Dawood Ibrahim to seek revenge for the demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. Yakub, who is the brother of Tiger, was allegedly not the main accused in the conspiracy.