The Supreme Court has said that the television interview of the gangrape victim’s friend could not be used as evidence in the trial court proceedings.
A Bench comprising Chief Justice Altamas Kabir, Justice M Y Eqbal and Justice Vikramajit Sen, after hearing Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran for the NCT of Delhi and V K Anand, counsel for the accused, set aside the order of the Delhi High Court which had allowed the use of the CD containing the interview as evidence.
Mohan Parasaran cited the SC judgments in Sidhu’s case and Manu Sharma’s case. He also explained the Sections 145 of the Evidence Act, Section 161 of the CrPC and 162 of the CrPC.
Concurring with the submissions of the Solicitor General, the Chief Justice said that the interview was given after the chargesheet was filed and therefore it could not be used as evidence under the law.
The Bench was hearing the appeal filed by the NCT of Delhi challenging the order of the Delhi High Court passed on March 7.
The accused in the case, Ram Singh, who has since died and his brother Mukesh had moved the High Court challenging the trial court order disallowing them from using the CD containing the interview as evidence.
Reversing this, the High Court had set aside the order of the trial court and allowed the CD to be used as evidence. Of the six accused, one is a juvenile and is facing proceedings before the Juvenile Justice Board. After the death of Ram Singh on March 11 in the Tihar jail, the proceedings against him have abated.
Presently, Mukesh, Vinay Sharma, Akshay Singh and Pawan Gupta are facing the trial for the rape and murder of the 23-year old woman.
On challenge, the apex court had issued notice to the sole respondent and stayed the order of the High Court by its order on March 22.
The order of the apex court stated that, in the meantime, the directions contained in the impugned judgment of the High Court regarding use of the video CD for the purpose of Sections 145, 146 and 155 of the Evidence Act, 1872, shall remain stayed.