HC defers trial in Kerala actress attack case till Nov 6

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Monday deferred the trial in the Kerala actress attack case till November 6 while considering the transfer applications filed by the prosecution and the victim seeking to shift the trial to another court.

During the hearing, the counsel of the victim submitted that questions affecting the character of the victim were raised by the accused and added that though objections were raised, the trial court overruled and allowed such objectionable questions.

“The transfer of trial to another court will not affect the deadline set by the Supreme Court to complete the trial… The trial judge and the prosecutor are now at loggerheads. The judge has made remarks against the prosecutor and has read out the contents of an anonymous letter against the prosecutor,” the counsel submitted.

“It is not possible to continue the trial in that court in such a scenario. Since the prosecution itself has expressed doubts about the bona fides of the judge and expressed no-confidence, how can the victim place faith in the court? The victim was put to cross-examination for nine continuous days. The victim of sexual crime had to undergo another ordeal,” the counsel added.
The prosecution submitted that the victim was put to several days of cross-examination before a battery of lawyers of the accused. “Prosection had raised objections. Even objections were not recorded. Unwarranted remarks were made in the court about the conduct of the victim,” the prosecutor submitted.

“The Supreme Court judgment allowing access to accused actor Dileep to the memory card did not exclude the prosecution. The SC said that a copy of the FSL report should be given to all concerned. But the trial court did not serve a copy of the report on the prosecution. The entire sequence of events shows that the trial is not being done in a fair manner. In such a backdrop, what is the point in conducting the trial,” the prosecution added.

After hearing the submissions, a bench of Justice VG Arun asked the prosecution whether these events, even if taken as flaws or mistakes, reflect bias on the part of the judge. The matter will now come up for consideration before the bench on November 6.

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An actor, who has worked in Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu films, was abducted and allegedly molested inside her car by a group of men, who had forced their way into the vehicle on the night of February 17, 2017. She later escaped. Malayalam actor Dileep is an accused in the case. 

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