The owner of the bus in which a 23-year-old girl was gangraped in New Delhi on December 16 last year, deposed as a prosecution witness on Thursday in a Delhi court and said that the vehicle was in continuous custody of its driver Ram Singh on the day of the incident and the following day as well.
Ramadhar, the carpenter who was lured into the bus and robbed by the accused before they gangraped the girl, also deposed as a prosecution witness and identified the four accused present in the court as those who had robbed and assaulted him on the same night.
Bus owner Dinesh Yadav was produced before additional sessions judge Yogesh Khanna from Tihar Jail where he is lodged in connection with a case of cheating and forgery in getting his vehicles registered and plying them on Delhi roads illegally.
"Accused Ram Singh (deceased) was the driver of the bus in the month of December 2012. One Akshay was the helper. I had not seen Akshay and hence cannot identify him.
"This bus was being parked by accused Ram Singh near his house because this bus was attached with the school and also with an office as a chartered bus to take officials from Delhi to Noida and that the accused used to pick up the students early in the morning," he told the court.
Ramadhar also told the judge that the persons present in the court room are the same who had robbed him on the night of December 16, 2012.
Ramadhar said that after work, he boarded the bus from Munirka Subzi Mandi in south Delhi as its helper was calling out its destination as Khanpur. He said when the bus started moving, one of the occupants said the bus was headed for Nehru Place, at which he tried to alight the vehicle.
"I tried to get down from the bus, one person who had a burn injury, beat me up while others pulled me towards the rear of the bus. They further assaulted me and removed all my belongings, including one mobilephone and Rs 1500," he said.
Ramadhar pointed at each of the accused persons present in the court and narrated their specific roles. Referring to the juvenile accused and deceased Ram Singh, Ramadhar said two persons, who were in the bus, were not present in the courtroom.
He, however, added he has identified one of the accused at the Juvenile Justice Board.
Ramdhar pointed at Akshay as the person who pulled him back in the bus while he was trying to debaord. He idenitified Mukesh as the person who was driving the bus, Vinay as the one who beat him up and robbed him and Pawan as a participant in the act.
Akshay, Vinay, Pawan and Mukesh are four of the six persons accused of gangraping and assaulting the paramedic in the moving bus on December 16, 2012, leading to her death 13 days later.
While the juvenile is facing inquiry before the JJB, Ram Singh was found dead in Tihar Jail in March. Since then, proceedings against him stand abated.
Both Dinesh and Ramadhar were summoned as prosecution witnesses on Wednesday after the police said their examination was necessary for the trial.