Rajesh Talwar's driver Umesh Sharma, a key prosecution witness in the Aarushi-Hemraj murder case, was on Friday declared hostile by a Ghaziabad court after he refused to identify two golf sticks mentioned in the identification documents presented by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
The golf stick theory is important for the CBI’s case as it maintained in its closure report that the dimensions of the striking surface of golf club number 5, seized from Rajesh Talwar’s residence, is identical to the dimensions of injuries found on both Aarushi and Hemraj.
Sharma, who was produced as a prosecution witness in the double murder case, alleged that he had signed the identification documents out of fear after CBI investigating officer AGL Kaul slapped him.
“Since the day Kaul sahib hit me, I am afraid of CBI people. I had signed the documents out of fear,” Sharma said when cross-examined by defence counsels.
Sharma told the court that he had got serviced Rajesh’s Santro car around three-four months before the murders and kept two golf sticks, a wiper and a bucket inside the servant quarters of Talwars’ Noida flat.
When he was shown the documents related to the sticks on Friday, he said he was forced to sign them after they were written. Refusing to identify golf stick number 4 and 5, he said he could not say whether these were the same ones kept inside the servant room.
Sharma, however, admitted he last saw Hemraj, Rajesh Talwar, Nupur Talwar and Aarushi inside the house on the night of May 15, 2008 when he had gone to return the car keys.
After the court declared him hostile, it allowed CBI special public prosecutor RK Saini to proceed with Sharma’s cross-examination during which he said that he had kept the sticks around three-four months before the murder and not 15 days.
Though the identification document says Sharma was explained the text of the papers in Hindi in the presence of three-four witnesses, he refused to acknowledge it. “That day my ear was aching and so I was not able to hear properly,” Sharma said.
However, he admitted he had not informed the CBI investigating officer about this when the memo was being prepared. He alleged Kaul slapped him at the CBI office on Lodhi Road because of which his ear-drum ruptured.
Sharma is the same man who had cleaned Aarushi’s room and kept blood-stained mattresses and ice-slabs from her room on the terrace of Talwars’ neighbour. He said he cleaned the room as per the police’s instructions.