The judges pronounced verdict on the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by People's Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR), challenging the death sentence awarded to Surendra Koli, the prime accused in the Nithari serial killing case.

A similar petition was filed by Koli himself, challenging the death sentence on the same ground as the one stated in the PIL. The PIL was filed on October 31 last year, three days after the Supreme Court rejected Koli's recall application.

Koli was to be hanged last year in Meerut in Uttar Pradesh but his execution was suspended twice by the Supreme Court.

The Apex Court had ruled last year that a death sentence can be commuted to life because of a long delay in a decision on a convict's mercy plea.

The 42-year-old Koli is a self-confessed cannibal found guilty 10 years ago of murdering young women and children at a bungalow in Nithari area of Noida. Koli had confessed to having sex with dead victims and also eating some of their body parts.

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