The Kerala High Court provided the prosecution 10 more days, to examine the additional witnesses summoned, in connection to the 2017 female actor abduction and sexual assault case on Tuesday, according to a Bar and Bench report.
It is to be noted that the Kerala High Court, on January 17, allowed the prosecution to examine five additional witnesses and re-examine three witnesses in the case, as per a report by The Hindu. It further said that Justice Kauser Edappagath directed the prosecution to ensure that the examination of witnesses and production of documents was completed by January 27.
Earlier, Ernakulam Additional Special Sessions Court rejected the plea to recall some of the witnesses and summon additional witnesses for examination. Following which, a counter appeal was filed at the high court, which granted the permission for the same.
However, on Tuesday, the Director-General of Prosecution TA Shaji informed the Court that only three witnesses have been examined so far, and that they may need ten more days to finish examining the other two additional witnesses.
“Having heard both sides, the time granted by this court to complete the examination of witnesses vide order dated Jan 17, 2022, is extended for a further period of 10 days. Learned DGP shall see that the examination of witnesses shall be completed by the extended period of 10 days from January 27, 2022,” the Court noted.
Senior Advocate B Raman Pillai, who appeared for actor Dileep, one of the main accused in the case, said that this may be the last extension granted. The court ordered the prosecution to ensure that the examination of witnesses are completed, within the stipulated time period.
With the trail almost nearing completion, a new case was registered against the actor and his associates, for allegedly conspiring to kill police officials, who were investigating them, in the female actor abduction and assault case. A case was filed based on the allegations and evidence (audio clips) released by filmmaker Balachandra Kumar, a former friend of Dileep.
Later, the police submitted Balachandra Kumar’s statement to the Ernakulam Additional Special Sessions Court and it ordered the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to inquire further, and file a report by January 20.
While the previous deadline for completion of the trail was set for February 16, 2022, the Supreme Court refused to pass an order on the Kerala government’s plea seeking an extension of six months for the trial’s completion, on Monday.
For a full timeline of the female actor abduction and assault case, see here.