New Delhi: With many mercy petitions lined up to get the final verdict of Raisina Hill, the long wait for leniency of terrorists Davinder Pal Singh Bhullar and Mahendra Nath Das, who were awarded death sentence, is over as President Pratibha Patil on Thursday rejected their mercy petition.

The move has likely paved the way for an early decision on the mercy pleas including the Parliament House attack convict Afzal Guru whose plea has been pending since 2006.

In the case of Bhullar, who was already awarded death sentence by Supreme Court in 2002 for conducting 1993 Delhi bomb blasts killing 30 people, had sent mercy petition to the President on January 14, 2003.

After waiting reply for long, Bhullar again filed petition in the Supreme Court asking for a quick decision in his case.

Hoping that his death sentence would be commuted to life imprisonment, Bhullar argued that he was awarded death sentence rather than death with life imprisonment. He made plea that after spending such a long time in jail waiting for reply of the petition for leniency, he should be allowed to serve life imprisonment.

Whereas in the case of Mahendra Nath Das who was sentenced to death for murdering a person while out on bail in another murder case, president rejected the mercy petition keeping his death sentence.

The information of petition rejection has been sent to Home Ministry by Rashtrapati Bhavan on the same day of decision. Now the ministry will formally inform Supreme Court about this.

Earlier on Monday, Supreme Court had queried the government about the status of mercy petition while hearing the case of Bhullar.

(JPN/Bureau)