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Court directs police to summon witnesses in 16 Dec case

Delhi police was on Thursday directed by a court here to send summons through ‘special messenger’ to the defence witnesses, who are allegedly illegally detained in Bihar, to ensure fair trial in the 16 December gang rape case.
Akshay Thakur's counsel alleged in the court that the witnesses, who were to depose in the accused's favour, were being ‘detained illegally’ by Bihar police and the Aurangabad SSP is not revealing the correct fact.

‘Though the witnesses are of defence, it is their responsibility to produce them, but in view of the allegation of the counsel for the accused and to ensure fair trial, the accused being in judicial custody and as no one is pursuing his case except his counsel, the witnesses be served through CJM, Aurangabad and also through SSP, Aurangabad.
‘Summons be sent through special messenger by Inspector Security, Saket and also by fax,’ additional sessions judge Yogesh Khanna said.

The court also said that the SSP, Aurangabad should send the compliance report of summons to the witnesses by 6 August. The court on 29 July had issued summons through accused's counsel A P Singh, directing the witnesses to appear on Thursday.
It had also directed police to sent a wireless message to the SSP regarding the allegations made by the counsel.

The court had further asked SSP to ensure that the police officials of Tandwa at Aurangabad in Bihar, as alleged, should not come in the way of the appearance of the witnesses before the court. It had also asked reply from the SSP.

However, the SSP in its reply refuted Akshay's allegation saying it is false and none of his family members who are to depose in the case are detained by the local police there.

The SSP reply was supported by Special Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan saying the counsel allegation is false and none of the witnesses has been detained and stopped from deposing.
Krishnan also said ‘there is no reason to disbelieve reply of the SSP. All this attempt is to delay the trial. If the agenda is to delay and delay, the court should not entertain counsel request’.
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