Kotkhai custodial death case: Charged deny consent for proceeding with trial due to Covid
Composed by Jagpreet Singh Sandhu
| Chandigarh |
November 20, 2020 9: 04: 06 am
Zahur Haider Zaidi, who is presently lodged in the Model prison of Burail, had submitted before the court that he desires to continue with the trial in the presence of the implicated in court.
After four accused in the Kotkhai custodial death case rejected authorization to continue with physical or virtual trial prior to the court, the special CBI court of Chandigarh on Thursday disposed of the application submitted by Zahur Haider Zaidi to start the physical hearing of the case and continue further in the matter.
Zahur Haider Zaidi, who is currently lodged in the Model prison of Burail, had actually submitted before the court that he wishes to continue with the trial in the existence of the accused in court.
The CBI counsel, Public District attorney, Kanwar Pal Singh, in reply offered his consent for the said purpose and stated that it has no objection, if the physical hearing of the case is started and proof in the matter is taped in the court.
The other accused, Mohan Lal, Surat Singh (both in custody), D W Negi, Manoj Joshi (both on bail), nevertheless, in reply submitted through their counsels that they are not prepared to proceed with the trial at this phase due to fear of Covid-19
Considering that the accused are in jail, Joint IG Jail and Superintendent, Burail Jail, Chandigarh has also sent his reply, mentioning that they are bound to follow the Covid-19 standards like quarantine period of 14 days etc for producing the implicated before the court. He included that they are prepared to produce the accused persons in court as and when directed to do so.
The unique CBI Judge, Dr Sushil Kumar Garg, however after hearing the matter, held that “… this court is ready to summon and analyze the prosecution witnesses in the physical presence of accused persons in the court as the learned Public Prosecutor for the CBI, found out counsels for implicated Zahur Haider Zaidi, Rafi Mohammad, Ranjit Steta and Rajinder Singh, Deep Chand Sharma are also all set to continue further with the trial after following the guidelines of Covid-19, provided by the skilled authority of Law. However, in view of the aforementioned directions of the Hon’ ble Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh and learned District and Sessions Judge, Chandigarh, at this stage, this court can not proceed with the trial in the absence of permission of all the counsels to today lawsuits as the learned counsels for the implicated Mohan Lal, Surat Singh, Manoj Joshi and D W Negi have actually not provided their approval particularly to proceed with the trial prior to the court physically or practically …”
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