December 16 gangrape: Two death row convicts get new counselhttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/crime/december-16-gangrape-two-death-row-convicts-get-new-counsel/

December 16 gangrape: Two death row convicts get new counsel

Vivek Sharma handed over to M L Sharma the paperbook pertaining to convict Pawan.

An advocate today informed the Delhi High Court he will represent two death row convicts in the December 16 gangrape — Mukesh and Pawan whose counsel had withdrawn from the case on Tuesday — but the court rejected his plea for recusal of one of the judges from the case.

Lawyers of 2 convicts withdraw from case

Appearing before the bench of justices Reva Khetrapal and Pratibha Rani,advocate M L Sharma said he has filed a ‘vakalatnama’ for Mukesh and Pawan and their relatives including Mukesh’s brother Suresh were also present in the court.

The bench recorded the presence of Sharma for Mukesh and Pawan and that of advocate A P Singh,appearing for convicts Vinay and Akshay Thakur as defence counsel in the case.

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Sharma told the bench that he should be supplied with paperbook (relevant documents) for both the convicts to file the appeal against the sentence within the stipulated time period of 30 days which expires on October 13.

Delhi gangrape: Sequence of events

The court,meanwhile,discharged advocate V K Anand and Vivek Sharma who withdrew themselves from the case on Tuesday.

Further,it directed the prosecution to supply the documents pertaining to convict Mukesh to Sharma.

Meanwhile,Vivek Sharma handed over to Sharma the paperbook pertaining to convict Pawan.

During the course of hearing,Sharma submitted that Justice Pratibha Rani should recuse from hearing the case as she had dismissed a plea filed by the accused for quashing of the FIR in April.

Reacting to his argument,Justice Pratibha Rani said,”Mr counsel,change of counsel doesn’t mean change of the bench. If you want you can move a petition seeking transfer of the case from this bench.

“There is no question of a bench partner to recuse… Absolutely,there is nothing personal. Unless it is taken away by the Chief Justice,we will not change,” the bench said.

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