Dec 16 gangrape: HC for speedy disposal of death reference hearinghttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/dec-16-gangrape-hc-for-speedy-disposal-of-death-reference-hearing/

Dec 16 gangrape: HC for speedy disposal of death reference hearing

The court also dismissed the plea by Mukesh’s lawyer V K Anand that the defence needed more time to file the appeals.

The division bench of the Delhi High Court on Tuesday said the hearings in the death sentence reference against the four convicted in the December 16 gangrape case would be expedited.

“The proviso to Section 368 CrPC says the court cannot give a judgment within the stipulated 30-day period – the time given to the accused to file an appeal. But it does not mean that the case cannot be heard in that time,” Justice Reva Khetrapal observed on Tuesday.

The High Court had summoned the four men convicted and sentenced to death penalty by a Sessions court recently for the gangrape and murder of a 23-year-old paramedic student aboard a moving bus on December 16 last year.

The four convicts – Mukesh,Akshay Thakur,Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta – were produced before the court of Justices Reva Khetrapal and Sunita Rani on Tuesday morning.

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The trial in the Sessions court was held on a day-to-day basis and concluded within 200 days of framing of charges. The High Court on Tuesday hinted that it may adopt the same approach as well.

“If the trial court can hold day-to-day hearings,let us also have it quickly,” the court said during arguments. However,no specific order for a day-to-day trial has been issued.

The court also dismissed the plea by Mukesh’s lawyer V K Anand that the defence needed more time to file the appeals.

“This being a death reference,the state has to start,” the court pointed out. Special Public prosecutor Dayan Krishnan informed the court that the prosecution was ready to present the case. The court then held that the prosecution could begin its submissions on Wednesday.

“You need not be present every day when the prosecutor is presenting his case,we have to wade through four large bags of evidence for now,you can send your juniors to be present an take notes if you cannot appear,” the court told the defence counsels.