They may be brought to Saket lock-up daily so counsel can confer with them, says judge

A special fast track court here on Thursday dismissed a plea by two accused persons in the December 16, 2012 Delhi gang rape case that the trial be held on alternate days instead of daily. Irked at the tardy pace of trial over the past one week or so, the court said such pleas were being made by defence to delay proceedings.

Mukesh and Akshay Singh, who had moved this application, withdrew another plea that they be provided with the Hindi translation of statements of 65 prosecution witnesses recorded so far by Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna.

“Even the prayer that the trial be conducted on alternate days or that the matter be adjourned every time [to] different dates to enable counsel to seek instructions from his clients to cross-examine the witnesses cannot be allowed as per Section 309 [power to postpone or adjourn proceedings] of the Cr. PC,” the court said.

It would be appropriate if the accused were brought to the lock-up at Saket at 11 a.m. every day so that counsel could have a meeting with them for seeking instructions, the court said.

The judge warned counsel M.L. Sharma that if he did not appear on time from Monday, the court would proceed with the case without him.

Meanwhile, prison authorities told the court they would provide Vinay Sharma, another accused, facilities in jail to prepare for a test for recruitment of group ‘C’ civilian lower division clerks in the Indian Air Force.

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