Dec 16 gangrape: Accused's father claims son was not in bus

New Delhi, PTI | Updated : 20 July 2013, 06:44 PM

The father of an accused in the December 16 gangrape case on Saturday told a special court here that his son was not in the bus in which a 23-year-old girl was gangraped by six persons.

Heera Lal, father of accused Pawan Gupta, defending his son before Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna, claimed his son is innocent and has been falsely implicated.

Recording his statement as a defence witness in the case, Lal told the judge that Pawan has closed his shop in the afternoon on the day of the incident and left for home.

"I asked my daughter about Pawan and she informed that his son had come to the jhuggi (house) and taken drink and chicken and thereafter had gone to the district park to attend some music function...."I then went to the district park along with my brother-in-law in his car to bring Pawan. A musical programme was going on and I found my son lying on the bench," Lal said.

He said that as Pawan was heavily drunk and was not in a position to walk, he and his brother-in-law had lifted him from the park and put him a car.

"Though we put water on Pawan's face to bring him back to senses, he was heavily intoxicated and came to senses on December 17, 2012 morning," Pawan's father claimed.

Earlier during recording his statement before the court, Pawan had also claimed that he was not in the bus and had gone to a music function along with co-accused Vinay Sharma.

However, accused Mukesh during his deposition had told the court that he was driving the bus in which the girl was sexually assaulted and her male friend was brutally attacked by his elder brother Ram Singh (since deceased), Vinay, Pawan, Akshay Thakur and the juvenile who is being tried by a
juvenile justice board separately.

Same were the submissions of the other three defence witnesses in the case.

However, Pawan's claim was opposed by the Special Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan, saying the accused was very much present in the bus on the night of the incident and his father and relatives are deposing falsely to save him from prosecution.

Initially, the court was trying driver Ram Singh, Vinay, Akshay, Pawan and Mukesh, all of whom had allegedly gangraped the girl in a moving bus in Delhi.

The victim died of injuries on December 29 last year while undergoing treatment in a Singapore hospital.

During the trial, Ram Singh was found dead in Tihar Jail on March 11 and court proceedings against him stand abated.

Pawan's father refuted the prosecution's claim and said it is wrong to suggest that on the intervening night of December 16 and 17, 2012 he was not present in his house.

"It is wrong to suggest that being the father of accused Pawan, I had cooked up a false story to create the plea of alibi. It is wrong to suggest that on December 16 and 17, 2012 intervening night he was in the company of co-accused Ram Singh, Vinay, Akshay, Mukesh and the juvenile," Lal said.

He said "It is wrong to suggest that on the alleged incident night, in a moving bus bearing no. DL-1P- 0149, he and the other five accused persons had committed sexual assault on the girl and assaulted the complainant (victim's friend)."
During the proceedings, counsel for Akshay sought the court's order to summon witnesses in his defence as they were unable to reach Delhi on the date fixed for their evidence because they could not get reservation in train for the date fixed by it.

The counsel also requested the court to make video conferencing for recording the testimony of defence witnesses on behalf of Akshay.

The court, however, refused to issue summon to the witnesses saying he will have to make arrangements on his own.

First Published: Saturday, July 20, 2013 06:28 PM
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