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Veerappan’s Aides get SC Breather, No Hanging Now

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday stayed the execution of four associates of Sandalwood tusker Veerappan till February 20, giving them a partial relief for now. Hearing on a petition that sought the cancellation of death penalty awarded to the convicts in a landmine blast, the apex court said that the case will be heard on Wednesday.

Earlier, the mercy petitions of four convicts were rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee on Feb 13. They had approached the apex court against their hanging.

The convicts, who have been awarded the death sentence, are – Gnanaprakash, Simon, Meesekar Madaiah and Bilavendran. They are currently lodged in a jail in Belgaum in Karnataka.

The four were convicted in connection with a landmine blast at Palar in Karnataka that had left 22 police personnel dead in 1993.

Earlier, a TADA court in Mysore had awarded them to life in 2001. However, the apex court sentenced them to death in 2004.

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