Shabnam Ali, who was convicted along with her lover Salim of murdering her family in Uttar Pradesh, is likely to become the first woman to be hanged in Independent India. The 38-year-old's mercy petition has already been rejected by both the Governor and President and she is likely to be hanged soon after a death warrant is issued. Shabnam is currently locked in Rampur district jail while Salim is lodged in Agra prison.
According to jail officials, the preparations have started for the hanging. Soon after the issue of death warrant, Shabnam will be transferred to Mathura, the only prison in India to have a female execution room. “Her mercy petition has been rejected by the President. We have requested the Amroha administration to obtain her death warrant. As soon as it is received, we will transfer her to Mathura district jail as it has the provision for hanging of women,” Jailor Rakesh Kumar Verma said.
Meanwhile, Pawan Jallad, who had earlier executed four convicts in the Nirbhaya gangrape-murder case, has visited Mathura jail and suggested some modifications. According to the Mathura Senior Jail Superintendent Shailendra Maitrey, there is a problem with the structure of the gallows. “We are fixing that now. We have also ordered two hanging ropes from Buxar Central Jail in Bihar,” Maitrey said.
On his part, Pawan said he has no qualms of executing a woman for the first time. “She killed her family along with her lover, so they should be hanged. I will do the trial, check the rope, check the board whether it’s fully prepared,” he said.
Shabnam’s uncle Sattar Ali also expressed his thoughts on the verdict and said that she should be hanged as she had brutally murdered seven family members — her mother, father, two brothers, sister-in-law, cousin and 10-month-old nephew.