Gang rape trial to get over in 3 months

Case put on hold since Feb 13 as judges father dies; proceedings to take time

Trial of the five men charged with raping a 23-year-old woman in a moving bus here on December 16 will take another three months to conclude, said advocates.
The court was to hear the case daily, but after the judge’s father died, the trial has been on hold since February 13.

It will resume on Monday, said Dayan Krishnan, the special public prosecutor in the case.
The trial, continuing since February 5 in a fast track court in Saket in south Delhi, is not being reported as additional sessions judge Yogesh Khanna has restrained the media from reporting the daily hearings. V K  Anand, the lawyer who represents main accused Ram Singh and his brother Mukesh, also said the trial will continue for another three to four months.

“There are so many witnesses that it will certainly take another three to four months to complete the proceedings. Now the court is recording the statements of witnesses, then cross-examinations will begin, followed by final arguments,” Anand said.

“The procedure probably will be completed in May-end.”

A P Singh, who represents other three accused, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Thakur, said the judgment will come in two-three months’ time.

Statements

“There are 80 witnesses in the case. Till now, 10 witnesses have recorded their statements before the court,” said Singh.

“Of the 10 witnesses, eight have been cross-examined and two are still left. Seventy more witnesses have to depose and it will take time,” Singh said.

The young woman, a physiotherapist trainee, was tortured and gang raped by five men and a juvenile in a moving bus on December 16.

She and her male friend were then thrown off on the road — bloodied and without clothes. The woman died in a Singapore hospital 13 days later.

Her brutal attack sparked spontaneous protests in the country, forcing the government to take several steps, including setting up the fast track court on December 19 to try the five accused.

The sixth, a minor, will be tried by the Juvenile Justice Board.

Charges

Police framed charges against the five on February 2. Delhi Police have made 80 witnesses in the case including the woman’s friend, doctors of Safdarjung Hospital here and Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore and the magistrate who recorded the victim’s statement.

Police have also booked the five accused on 13 counts under the Indian Penal Code, including murder, rape, attempt to murder and criminal conspiracy.

The accused have pleaded not guilty and sought trial.

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