Saying it would not conduct a mini-trial,the Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a petition by dentist couple Rajesh and Nupur Talwar who wanted 14 witnesses summoned to the Ghaziabad court where they are being tried for the 2008 murder of their teenaged daughter Aarushi and domestic help Hemraj.
The bench of Justices B S Chauhan and Dipak Misra told the couple that the prosecution could not be compelled to examine witnesses at their discretion and it was for them to request the trial court to call these witnesses in defence.
How can you compel the other party? We cannot compel the CBI or the prosecuting agency to examine certain witnesses. It is absolutely their prerogative, the bench said.
It said the law permitted the couple to examine these witnesses who they thought were likely to assist their version. Why are you in a hurry? Recording of your statement is going on. When your turn comes,you can call them as defence witnesses. There is no law that prohibits you from doing that. There is no need to hurry, the court said,adding it was not their case that the trial court had rejected their demand to call these witnesses.
Underlining that the apex court was not the panacea for all grievances when other legal remedies were still to be exhausted,the bench also snubbed contentions over details of the Talwars house where the double murder took place. We are not here for a mini-trial and issue a certificate to you. We are only concerned with your plea challenging the High Court order, the bench said,refusing to grant any relief to the couple.
The trial court has been recording the statements of the Talwars. Rajesh was asked 805 questions and the recording of his statement ended last Thursday. The court is now recording the statement of Nupur. Additional Sessions Judge Shyam Lal asked her 211 questions on Tuesday,taking the total number of questions to 595.
Under Section 313 of the Code of Criminal Procedure,questions are put to the accused by the judge based on the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses.
On Tuesday,questions put to Nupur revolved around the testimonies of forensic experts B K Mahapatra and V K Singhla. While her response to most questions was that forensic reports were a matter of record,she told court that a purple pillow cover with Hemrajs blood on it was found from Krishnas room. Krishna,an employee of Rajesh Talwar at that time,was initially an accused in the case,but was later let off for lack of evidence.