The Indian government will file a mercy petition on behalf of the family members of two of its nationals whose death sentence was confirmed by Qatar's Court of Cassation earlier this month, India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said on Monday.
According to IANS news agency, the minister, who had sought a report from the Indian Ambassador in Qatar, said the embassy has requested the government of Tamil Nadu, the southern Indian state from where the two men come from, to help in filing the mercy plea.
Alagappa Subramanian and Chelladurai Perumal are accused of killing an elderly Qatari woman in Doha's New Salata area in 2012.
"I have received report from Qatar reg (arding) death sentence for Alagappa Subramaniam and Chelladurai Perumal, both from Tamil Nadu," she said in an earlier tweet.
The death sentence of the third convict, Shivakumar Arasan, who is also from Tamil Nadu, has been commuted to life imprisonment.
"We had filed a case in respect of all three because we believe that the penalty is too harsh ... Our embassy in Qatar continues to closely monitor this case in association with the lawyer who has been appointed for all three accused," External Affairs Ministry spokesman Vikas Swarup added.
Meanwhile, the Indian embassy said it was awaiting a copy of the court verdict to 'proceed further'.
Indian ambassador P Kumaran said the petition has to come from the families of the convicts.
"We will forward it to the Emiri Diwan through the Foreign Office," he said.
Nizar Kochery, the lawyer who defended the accused in the case, said: "Once we receive the copy of the judgement, we would do the necessary follow-up in the case."
The lawyer said when a mercy petition is filed, it is mandatory to attach a copy of the judgement.
In its verdict delivered on January 2, the Court of Cassation upheld the death sentence handed down by the lower courts to Subramanian and Perumal. According to the prosecution, the lady was killed during a bid to burgle her house.
The third accused Arasan, who too had been sentenced to death by the First Instance Court in 2014, had his sentence commuted to life by the Court of Appeals in June last year.