New Delhi: In a dramatic late night development, the Supreme Court accepted a special leave petition (SLP) filed by the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) as part of a last ditch effort to stop the release of the juvenile convict in the Nirbhaya gang-rape case from an observation home on Sunday.
The development comes, after DCW chief Swati Maliwal submitted the SLP to the registerer general of the Supreme Court late on Saturday night, seeking the court's intervention against the release of the juvenile convict, considered the most brutal among the attackers in the December 16, 2012 gang-rape case.
The SLP was filed after the Delhi High Court refused to restrain the release of the convict.
Meanwhile, Chief Justice of India Tirath Singh Thakur, who was informed about the developments by the registerer general, has referred the petition to a vacation bench comprising justices AK Goel and UU Lalit.
The bench is now expected to hear the petition on Monday.
As the news spread, a large contingent of the media gathered outside the apex court's premises to follow on the latest development in the case.
Asked why it took her the entire day to submit the petition, Maliwal told reporters that she had to take care of legal matters and paper works in the case.
Sources said that DCW has put forth some 20 grounds in its petition to stop the juvenile convict's release, scheduled on Sunday, from a correction home.
In its petition, DCW reportedly sought to bring the court's attention to the heinous nature of the crime and the juvenile's behaviour during the time he spent at the correction facility, noting that he might continue to be unreformed.
It also contended that no mental assessment of the state of mind of the juvenile offender has been taken into account for his release.
"The court has accepted the case and listed it as the item number 3 which is to be heard on Monday. Since the case has been registered, the matter is sub-judice now and hence the Nirbhaya rapist should not be released on Sunday," Maliwal said.
Lawyers associated with the case are also of the view that the convict has been unremorseful and he has been further radicalised, and therefore he still poses a grave threat to the society.