SDM testifies in Dec 16 rape case

SDM testifies in Dec 16 rape case

The sub-divisional magistrate, who had recorded the statement of the December 16 Delhi gang rape victim, on Thursday testified before the fast court conducting the trial in the case.

The judicial officer, who had recorded the statement of the 23-year-old girl at Safdarjung Hospital here, deposed as a prosecution witness during in-camera proceedings against the five adult accused, who have been charged with rape and murder of the victim. The sixth accused is a juvenile who is facing proceedings before the Juvenile Justice Board.

The SDM was also cross-examined by the counsel for accused Ram Singh, Mukesh, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Singh before additional sessions judge Yogesh Khanna which went on for over four hours. The statement of the victim, who was then in a critical condition, was recorded twice as the SDM had alleged that a Delhi Police official had interfered during the recording of the girl’s first statement. After the controversy, the Delhi Police had recorded victim's second statement in the presence of another judicial officer who was a metropolitan magistrate.

The court could not record the statement of the metropolitan magistrate due to paucity of time. The metropolitan magistrate was directed by the court to appear before it on Friday for recording of his statement as a prosecution witness along with three others. The two judicial officers had recorded the victim’s version of the brutal rape and assault which is now being treated as a dying declaration against the five adult accused facing trial in the case.

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