Dentist couple Rajesh and Nupur Talwar on Tuesday asked the special CBI court to drop the name of a defence witness in the Aarushi-Hemraj murder case, claiming he was allegedly threatened by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The agency rejected the allegations.
Two other defence witnesses also did not turn up to record their statements on Tuesday.
The Talwars' counsels on Tuesday submitted an application before the Ghaziabad court, seeking discharge of Mahendra Sharma from their list of seven defence witnesses. The court accepted their plea.
"The witness was threatened telephonically by the CBI and told not to testify against the agency. Sharma's employer was also asked not to be involved in such matters. In such a case, the witness is not reliable for us and we sought his discharge from our list of witnesses," Talwars' lawyer Manoj Shishodia said.
On the other hand, CBI's special public prosecutor RK Saini said that it was a "delaying and time-buying tactic" by the Talwars. "Our personnel had gone to serve summons to the witness but he was not found at home. The summons was handed over to Sharma's father. The accused are levying false allegations because they know that the witness would not speak in their favour," Saini said.
Sharma — a carpenter — did some woodwork at the Talwars' residence in Noida.
Masuma Jha and Vikas Sethi remain to depose before the court as defense witnesses. The court fixed July 18 as the next date of hearing.