Counsel says gang-rape victim’s friend ‘womaniser’

New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) The male friend of the woman gang-raped here Dec 16, 2012 was Thursday described as a “womaniser” by a defence counsel in a Delhi court.

Advocate V.K. Anand, appearing for accused Mukesh, appeared before Additional Session Judge Yogesh Khanna and cross-examined the victim’s male friend, the complainant in the case, on the issue of his women friends.

The court, however, intervened and said: “This question is disallowed as it is not relevant. You can’t harass the witness like this. The question is disallowed being scandalous.”

Anand said that the male friend of the victim had stated earlier that he had many female friends apart from her.

He said the complainant had relations with many women and he was a “womaniser”.

Judge Khanna asked counsel not to “harass the witness” by asking such questions. “Do not scandalise,” said court.

The court also disallowed the lawyer from raising questions about the intimate relationship between the witness and the gang-rape victim who was with him at the time of being gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in south Delhi.

“We are not holding the trial for sexual offences. It is effecting the character of the victim,” the court told Anand, asking him to ask only relevant questions.

The male friend of the victim had appeared before the court to depose as a prosecution witness in the case. His cross-examination would continue Friday.

Special Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan also raised objection on Anand’s questions.

Another defence counsel Vivek Sharma, appearing for accused Pawan Gupta, told the court that the accused “must have done this (gang rape) under some provocation”.

The court also refused to allow the counsels to ask questions related to the interview given by the witness to a news channel.

The 23-year-old woman was brutally tortured and gang-raped by five men and a juvenile. She later died in a Singapore hospital.

The juvenile is facing proceedings before a Juvenile Justice Board, while the four other accused were put up for trial in the fast track court. One of the accused allegedly committed suicide in jail.

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