19 June 2014, India
The Union home ministry on Wednesday rejected the mercy petition of Surender Koli, who was found guilty in the infamous serial killing of children in Nithari (Uttar Pradesh), along with four other death row convicts.
According to sources, Union home minister Rajnath Singh signed five files recommending President Pranab Mukherjee that the mercy pleas of Renukabai and Seema (Maharashtra), Koli (Uttar Pradesh), Rajendra Pralhadrao Wasnik (Maharashtra), Jagdish (Madhya Pradesh) and Holiram Bordoloi (Assam) should be rejected.
Koli, convicted of rape and murder of several children in Noida’s Nithari area in 2005, was awarded the death penalty, along with his employer Moninder Singh Pandher, by a Ghaziabad court on February 13, 2009. The Allahabad high court, later in 2009, confirmed the death sentence to Koli but acquitted Pandher of all the charges. Koli moved a mercy plea in 2011 before the President of India.
The President, who takes the final call on mercy pleas, can return the cases to the ministry for reconsideration, sources said. While a total of 16 cases had been filed against Koli, he was awarded the death sentence in four cases.