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Hathras Gang Rape Case : Allahabad High Court Refuses To Stay/Transfer Ongoing Trial

Sparsh Upadhyay
27 Aug 2021 6:04 PM GMT
Hathras Gang Rape Case : Allahabad High Court Refuses To Stay/Transfer Ongoing Trial
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The Allahabad High Court on Thursday refused to stay/transfer the criminal trial proceedings in the Hathras Gang Rape case pending before the Special Court (SC/ST Act), Hathras. The Bench of Justice Jaspreet Singh and Justice Rajan Roy further said that the requisite security which was ordered by the Court to ensure non-disruption of the trial by any person and for facilitating a...

The Allahabad High Court on Thursday refused to stay/transfer the criminal trial proceedings in the Hathras Gang Rape case pending before the Special Court (SC/ST Act), Hathras.

The Bench of Justice Jaspreet Singh and Justice Rajan Roy further said that the requisite security which was ordered by the Court to ensure non-disruption of the trial by any person and for facilitating a free and fair trial, will continue to be in place.

It may be noted that taking into account the complaint made by the Victim's family in Hathras Rape and Murder case regarding the threats extended to them, including the Counsel for the Victim's family in the open Court, the Allahabad High Court had, on March 19, directed an inquiry into the allegations.

The matter in brief

Allegedly, shortly after the prosecution witness began deposing before the Presiding Officer, Special Court (SC/ST Act), Hathras on 05th March 2021, an advocate stormed into the courtroom and charged towards the applicant and the complainant counsel, shouting and issuing threats.

As per the affidavit, amongst the barrage of threats extended to the complainant Advocate Seema Kushwaha, he stated that in this case the complainant counsel could not represent the victim's family.

Allegedly, at the same time, a large mob, including lawyers, entered the courtroom and surrounded the applicant and the complainant's counsel in order to threaten and intimidate them.

Court's order/observations

In pursuance to Court's order dated March 19, 2021, the District Judge, Hathras had conducted a detailed inquiry and had submitted a report in a sealed cover so has the Inspector General, Central Sector, C.R.P.F. Lucknow.

District Judge's report was submitted after recording the statements of sixteen (16) persons, including Ms. Seema Kushwaha, Advocate and the victim's brother and mother, who were present at the time of the incident

The report also took into account the CCTV Footage and was accompanied by statements of the concerned persons recorded by the District Judge, Hathras.

Having perused both the reports and the statements/reports annexed therewith, without mentioning the details contained therein, the Court didn't find any reason to stay the proceedings in Session Trial No. 538 of 2020 (Case Crime No. 0005 of 2020) pending before the Special Court (SC/ST Act), Hathras nor for that matter to transfer the same elsewhere.

However, the Court made it clear that its observations/directions as contained in its order dated 19.03.2021 for providing requisite security as also with regard to non-disruption of the trial by any person and the consequences which will follow on such disruption etc., for facilitating a free and fair trial, stand as it is, and they shall be implemented and complied by the concerned strictly.

Lastly, the Court took into account the submission of the counsel for C.B.I. that it proposes to file an application for transfer of the trial, however, the Court noted, it had not been filed, therefore, the Court held that the instant order would be without prejudice to any application for transfer of trial which may be filed by the C.B.I., if it is otherwise maintainable.

Case title - Suo-Moto Inre: Right To Decent & Dignified Last Rites/Cremat v. State Of U.P. Thru Additional Chief Secretary,Home And Ors.

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