NEW DELHI - Lawyers at an Indian court hearing the case of a fatal gang rape which has shocked the nation said on Wednesday they would refuse to defend the men accused of taking part in the assault and murder.
“We have decided that no lawyer will stand up to defend the rape accused as it would be immoral to defend the case,” Sanjay Kumar, a lawyer and a member of the Saket District Bar Council, said.
Kumar said the 2,500 advocates registered at the court have decided to “stay away” to ensure “speedy justice”, meaning the government would have to appoint lawyers for the defendants.
Another lawyer at the court confirmed the boycott.
In 2008, Indian lawyers also refused to defend a gunman who took part in attacks on Mumbai which killed 166 people, leaving him with a government-appointed lawyer. He was executed in November last year.
Meanwhile, a case has been registered against the owner of the bus in which the 23-year-old woman was gang raped here December 16 night, police said on Tuesday.
Dinesh Yadav has been booked for giving false information to the state transport department to get a registration certificate and permit for the bus, which was being used for ferrying school children, police said. “The residential proof submitted by Yadav was found false because he never resided at the mentioned address,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (North) Sindhu Pillai.
“Anant Gopal, the landlord of the property in north Delhi’s Burari, told us that Yadav never resided at his house. Yadav filed a false affidavit claiming that he was a resident of the given address,” said Pillai.
Besides the bus involved in the gang-rape crime, 10 other buses were registered in the name of Dinesh Yadav, police said.
Another report adds: A hunger strike by a man demanding death sentence for those who gang-raped a young woman here entered the 10th day on Wednesday with no sign of the protests at the site abating.
Rajesh Gangwar from Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh began his fast 10 days ago on a road near the Jantar Mantar observatory in the heart of the capital. Babu Singh, from Farrukhabad in Uttar Pradesh, is on day five of his fast. Both men spent another night at the protest site in biting cold — even as the temperature dipped to 4.8 degree Celsius early on Wednesday. They are demanding immediate death sentences for the six behind the gruesome gang rape of the physiotherapy student who died in Singapore on December 29. All six are in Tihar Jail.