With the police FIR in the Amboli double murder case having no mention of sexual harassment, two of the three women who were part of the group have agreed to record their statements for framing of additional charge of molestation against the accused.
However, since the incident occurred on October 20, the question is whether the delay will have some bearing on the case.
Legal counsels believe that the additional charge would address the issue of motive. "It is permissible in law to make additional disclosure at a later stage along with a satisfactory explanation for the delay," said senior counsel Majeed Memon.
"It can be justifiably argued that the girls were under trauma and it took them time to get to a normal state of mind," he explained
According to advocate Arfan Sait, recording additional statement or additional charge is part and parcel of an investigation, which helps makes the case watertight. "In every criminal trial, the chain of circumstances should be complete and in this case the charge of molestation will help explain the motive that led to the altercation between the victims and the accused," Sait said.
Agreed advocate Jamshed Mistry. He said, "The police can add charges if it is found to be a very important component that led to the graver offence."
According to Mistry, there was no case of delay since additional charges could be used as evidence to corroborate the chain of events.
"The arrested accused can even be charged for criminal intimidation and unlawful assembly armed with weapons. However, these might not make much of a difference since the prime charge is for murder," explained Sait.
The onus, however, would be on the girls to explain the delay according to facts and circumstances during the trial, Memon said. "It all began with the eve-teasing incident, so section 354 [outraging a woman's modesty] can be a relevant charge," he said.