Trial begins, victimís friend testifies in wheel chair

FP

With the trial of five of the six accused in the Delhi gangrape case beginning Tuesday, the victim's friend, who was with her at the time of the gangrape and was also beaten up, gave his testimony. The bus in which the gangrape took place was also brought to the court house.

The 28-year-old software engineer came to the special fast-track court of Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna in a wheelchair, and was examined by the court for over four hours.

Sources said the police also filed a supplementary chargesheet, with the victim's post-mortem report and other medical reports.

The five accused ó Ram Singh, Mukesh, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Kumar and Akshay Thakur ó have been charged with 12 offences for the gangrape and assault of the 23-year-old paramedical student on December 16. The victim died in a Singapore hospital 13 days after the incident. All the five have pleaded not guilty.

The sixth accused has been declared a juvenile and faces proceedings before a Juvenile Justice Board.

The court had earlier invoked provisions of Section 327 of the CrPC to ban the media from "printing any matter related to the proceedings" in the case. The trial is being held in-camera and only those directly connected to the case are allowed inside the courtroom. The lawyers in the case have also been banned from giving public statements.

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