With the Supreme Court on Friday dismissing dentist couple Nupur Talwar and Rajesh Talwar's plea to quash criminal proceedings against them, decks have been clearedfor their trial in the Aarushi-Hemraj murder case.
Nupur and Rajesh are set to face trial from early next month in a Ghaziabad court over charges related to the murder of their only child Aarushi, 13, and the family's domestic help Hemraj Banjade, 48.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which had probed the case for around 31 months, had on December 29, 2010, filed a closure report in the Ghaziabad court. It said there was key circumstantial evidence indicating the involvement of the Talwars' in the murders but it did not have enough direct evidence to prosecute them. Also, it could not establish the murder motive.
The Ghaziabad trial court had rejected the CBI's closure report, saying there was enough circumstantial evidence to put the Talwars on trial.
The court turned the closure report into the chargesheet and summoned the Talwars on February 9, 2011, to face trial for murder and charges relating to the tampering of evidence. The SC stayed the trial.
"The CBI will assist the trial in the Aarushi Talwar-Hemraj murder case. It is likely that the trial may begin from early February," said CBI spokesperson Dharini Mishra. CBI sources, however, ruled out their immediate arrest.
The Talwars were not available for comments but their lawyer Rebecca John said, "Since the Supreme court has dismissed their plea, they will face trial. I have seen the evidence the CBI says it has against them, and I am still confident that Dr Rajesh Talwar and his wife Dr Nupur are innocent. We can't seek anticipatory bail."
Legal experts say the case is likely to be sent to a session's court in Ghaziabad, which has the powers to grant bail.
Aarushi and Hemraj were found killed in identical manner in their Noida flat - their necks were slit and heads smashed with a blunt object. Her mother Nupur found Aarushi's body in her room around 6am on May 16, 2008, while the Noida police recovered Hemraj's body a day later from the terrace.
The CBI's closure report had found several key circumstantial evidence against the Talwars.
During forensic examination, the striking surface dimensions of Rajesh's golf stick were found to be "identical to the dimensions of the injury on the heads of Aarushi and Hemraj".