No relief for Shayan Munshi | delhi | Hindustan Times
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No relief for Shayan Munshi

The Delhi High Court refused to order a permanent stay on perjury proceedings against actor Shayan Munshi and 21 other witnesses, who had turned hostile in the murder case of model Jessica Lall.

delhi Updated: Jul 28, 2008 22:59 IST
Harish V Nair

The Delhi High Court on Monday refused to order a permanent stay on perjury proceedings against actor Shayan Munshi and 21 other witnesses, who had turned hostile in the murder case of model Jessica Lall.

A Division Bench, comprising Justices RS Sodhi and PK Bhasin, had turned the heat on the hostile witnesses after convicting Manu Sharma, Vikas Yadav and Amarjeet Singh Gill on December 18, 2006, overturning the lower court’s verdict that acquitted them.

It has been 19 months since conviction notices were issued to the witnesses. But Manu Sharma’s appeal, which has still not been reviewed by the Supreme Court, is a relief for the witnesses as it has kept the perjury proceedings adjourned.

The witnesses asked how they could be held guilty of “deliberately deposing falsely” in the trial court if the apex court acquitted them after considering their appeal. The case was transferred to the new Bench after Justice Sodhi retired on November 7. The lawyers of all the witnesses have requested the High Court to defer the proceedings until the apex court pronounced its verdict on the appeal.

On Monday, when the matter once again came up before a bench headed by Justice BN Chaturvedi, the witnesses’ lawyers urged the court to adjourn the matter sine die (a permanent stay) on the grounds that the Supreme Court was yet to fix a date for hearing Manu Sharma’s appeal so that the court did not have to keep calling short adjournments. Justice Chaturvedi, however, declined the request and adjourned the case until November 11.