Vikas Yadav and Amardeep Singh Gill, co-accused in the Jessica Lall murder case, on Wednesday had a tough time convincing the Delhi High Court that they were not present at the Tamarind Court party, where the model was shot dead.
The judges subjected their lawyers to grilling as even the trial court—though it had acquitted them—had held that they were present at the party.
"You have not answered any of our questions despite arguing for long," a Division Bench comprising Justice RS Sodhi and Justice PK Bhasin told Vikas's lawyer.
The judges were angry that the counsel was "beating around the bush" when asked to disprove the charges of destruction of evidence against Vikas. The allegation against the accused was that he had removed prime accused Manu Sharma's Tata Safari from the scene of crime.
The council said the car was planted at the spot and later driven to Noida by the police. Asked about the bullet and broken glass pieces seized from the car, he said that it showed that Vikas had not tried to destroy evidence.
He argued that if Vikas had changed the glass, which was broken by a guard at the Tamrind Court, he could well have removed the cartridge from the car as well. He could also have changed the colour of the car and the number plate but had not done so.
A lab analysis of the glass pieces had proved that its chemical composition did not match with the other glasses in the car, he said, adding that this meant that they were planted.
According to the prosecution, Manu, along with Gill, Yadav and Alok Khanna, went to the party in a black Tata Safari. They abandoned the car and fled the place soon after the incident.
A few hours after the incident, Gill and Yadav went in a Tata Sierra to bring back the Safari.
IU Khan, the counsel for Gill, in his arguments denied Gill had attended the party. To this the Bench said that although the trial court had acquitted them, it had held that all the accused had attended the party. "When you have not challenged the trial court's findings, how can you contradict them?" asked the Bench.
Email Harish Nair: firstname.lastname@example.org