More than six weeks after the gang-rape of a 23-year-old woman on a moving bus shook the nation’s conscience, a fast track Delhi court framed charges against five accused in the case on Saturday.
The five men have been charged on 14 counts, including that of gang-rape and murder. The five accused — bus driver Ram Singh, his brother Mukesh Singh, helper Akshay Thakur, fruit vendor Pawan Gupta and assistant gym instructor Vinay Sharma — pleaded not guilty and claimed trial.
The sixth accused, a minor, will be tried by the Juvenile Justice Board. Police claimed that the juvenile accused, who committed acts of heinous torture on the woman, was the most barbarous of the gang.
The court observed that the juvenile was “an associate” of the others, “who committed gang-rape as part of a criminal conspiracy”.
Meanwhile, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and party vice president Rahul Gandhi met family members of the victim, a day after the Centre brought an ordinance providing for tough punishment to rapists.