Unnao rape case: In-camera recording of survivor's statement against Kuldeep Singh Sengar begins in temporary court at Delhi AIIMS

  • The Delhi High Court had on Friday approved recording the rape survivor's statement at the AIIMS trauma centre

  • The Supreme Court in August ordered that the case be shifted out of Uttar Pradesh and criticised the Yogi Adityanath-led state government of negligence in ensuring the survivor's safety

  • The woman's statement, alleging sexual assault against Sengar, is being recorded by District Judge Dharmesh Sharma and is to continue on a day-to-day basis until its conclusion

The rape case against expelled BJP MLA from Unnao, Kuldeep Singh Sengar proceeded on Wednesday as the recording of the survivor's statement began in an in-camera session at a temporary court at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi. The woman's statement, alleging sexual assault against Sengar, is being recorded by District Judge Dharmesh Sharma and is to continue on a day-to-day basis until its conclusion.

Sengar, along with co-accused Shashi Singh, was brought to the temporary court at the Jai Prakash Narayan Apex Trauma Centre in the hospital's premises, on Wednesday morning. The survivor, who was critically injured in a car crash on 28 July, is presently admitted at the facility in Delhi.

 Unnao rape case: In-camera recording of survivors statement against Kuldeep Singh Sengar begins in temporary court at Delhi AIIMS

FIle image of BJP MLA Kuldip Singh Sengar, an accused in the Unnao rape case. PTI

Sengar, in addition to charges of rape, will also reportedly be tried for murder in the case of the accident due to which the victim and her lawyer were grievously injured and two of her aunts had died.

The Delhi High Court had on Friday approved recording the rape survivor's statement at the AIIMS trauma centre. A notification to this effect was issued by the high court from the administrative side, which said Sharma, who is conducting the trial of the cases, shall record her testimony.

The Supreme Court in August ordered that the case be shifted out of Uttar Pradesh and criticised the Yogi Adityanath-led state government of negligence in ensuring the survivor's safety. Soon after, the survivor was also air-lifted from a Lucknow hospital to Delhi on the apex court's orders.

"Her uncle, who is lodged in a Rae Bareli prison, has alleged that false cases were slapped against him by people close to Sengar for not yielding to the pressure after his niece accused the MLA of sexual assault. Her uncle, whose wife died in the accident, has also alleged that police did not pay heed to complaints by the woman’s family," The Indian Express reported.

Sharma had recently written a letter to the Delhi High Court seeking permission to hold in-camera proceedings at AIIMS for recording the woman's statement after doctors said it was "not advisable" to bring her to the court premises. Sharma informed the Registrar General of the high court that the main investigative agency in the case — Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) — and the woman and her family have "no objection" to such deposition.

In its order, the apex court had also directed the CBI to complete its probe into the case within two weeks and file the chargesheet in the road accident case, in which the rape survivor was injured. It also indicated that if the special judge needed more than 45 days to complete the proceedings, then it may consider the request.

While transferring the cases related to the Unnao incident to Delhi, the Supreme Court had fixed a time limit of 45 days for the trial court to complete the proceedings. The apex court had earlier said it wanted "fair and speedy trial" in the cases arising out of the rape of the woman, when she was a minor, allegedly by Sengar in 2017.

In July, a truck rammed into the car she was travelling in with some family members and her lawyer. Two of her aunts died in the road accident. On 1 August, the apex court also directed the Uttar Pradesh government to provide Rs 25 lakh to the survivor as an interim compensation.

It had also directed the state government to pay Rs 5 lakh to the lawyer, who is in a critical condition and undergoing treatment. The court had earlier ordered transfer of all the five related cases in the matter to Delhi but later modified its order putting in abeyance shifting of the accident case till the probe was completed.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Sep 11, 2019 12:48:02 IST