Supreme Court shifts sexual assault case involving Haryana gangster’s son to Delhi
The father of the accused is a notorious gangster Rakesh Banjara who has several cases of murder, abduction and assault against him.Updated: Jun 02, 2020 09:42 IST
The Supreme Court has shifted the trial in a sexual assault case from Haryana to Delhi after the minor victim’s family produced evidence to show how the accused, son of a noted gangster in the state, was issuing mortal threats that made it impossible for them to attend trial in a Gurgaon court.
The series of threats were by way of WhatsApp messages and phone calls to the girl’s mother. She has been threatened with dire consequences if the family proceeds with the case. Presenting the entire evidence in the Supreme Court, the victim’s mother told a single judge bench of Justice Hrishikesh Roy, “petitioner (mother) can no longer attend court hearings for the fear of her life.”
She was assisted by advocate Nikhil Borwankar who prepared the petition under Section 406 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) asking the Supreme Court to transfer the case from Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) in Gurgaon to Delhi.
The judge examined the series of threats issued to the petitioner since November 29, 2018. It began three months after the victim’s parents lodged the complaint with the Mahila (women) Police Station, in Haryana’s Manesar. The accused was staying in the same housing society as the victim. He raped her first on August 16, 2018, and subsequently that same month on August 27 in the basement of the building. The victim had gone down to pick her football when the incident occurred.
The Supreme Court judge held, “Considering the nature of the allegations as also the grounds pleaded by the petitioner on the background of the first respondent and his family, I deem it fit and proper to allow the transfer petition.” The case will now be tried at District Court Complex, in Delhi’s Saket.
The father of the accused is a notorious gangster Rakesh Banjara who has several cases of murder, abduction and assault against him. On the day of the crime, the victim’s family alleged that Rakesh came to the society and threatened them from pursuing the complaint. The police had launched a manhunt against the accused who went absconding and was arrested on September 9, 2018.
Days after the incident, the victim’s family reported about the threatening calls and WhatsApp image of a ‘revolver’ to the Haryana Police on August 30. No complaint was registered. The petitioner produced photographs in the Supreme Court to show the accused in the company of senior police officers at social events.
According to petitioner’s lawyer Nikhil Borwankar, “Based on unverified school certificate, the accused was shown to be 17 years of age and tried as a juvenile. This cannot be as he was attending college at the time of incident. This order passed by the magistrate is pending before the apex court in a separate matter.”
The accused faces the charge of aggravated sexual assault under Section 6 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) and criminal intimidation punishable under Section 506 of IPC. The apex court has directed immediate shifting of the case records to the Delhi court.