Actor Sexual Assault Case Involving Dileep : Supreme Court Dismisses Kerala Govt Plea For Change Of Trial Judge

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first_imgTop StoriesActor Sexual Assault Case Involving Dileep : Supreme Court Dismisses Kerala Govt Plea For Change Of Trial Judge LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK15 Dec 2020 12:24 AMShare This – xThe Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed the special leave petition filed by the State of Kerala seeking the change of the judge holding trial in the 2017 actor sexual assault case in which prominent Malayalam film actor Dileep is accused as a conspirator.Dismissing Kerala’s petition, a bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar upheld the Kerala High Court judgment which rejected the transfer…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed the special leave petition filed by the State of Kerala seeking the change of the judge holding trial in the 2017 actor sexual assault case in which prominent Malayalam film actor Dileep is accused as a conspirator.Dismissing Kerala’s petition, a bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar upheld the Kerala High Court judgment which rejected the transfer petitions of the prosecution and victim.The bench remarked that the allegations of bias raised by the state government against the trial judge are unwarranted and observed that such allegations will affect the morale of the judge.The bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murari, also remarked that the state government should not have made such allegations against the court.The prosecution had sought for transfer of the case alleging bias on the part of the judge. Later, the victim too approached the High Court supporting the prosecution plea for transfer. The victim alleged that the judge allowed her to be harassed and humiliated during the cross-examination by defence lawyers. According to the victim, the judge was hostile and was not sensitive to her trauma as a survivor of a horrific sexual crime.On November 20, a single bench of the Kerala High Court had dismissed the petitions filed by the prosecution and the victim.”When the question is one of transfer of a criminal case on the ground of judicial bias, mere allegation of apprehension of bias is not enough, the court has to see whether such apprehension is reasonable or not”, a bench of Justice V G Arun of the High Court had observed.At first, the prosecution had filed an application before the trial court seeking to stop the proceedings to move the High Court for transferring the case. This application was dismissed by the Court of Additional Sessions Judge (Special/CBI)-III, Ernakulam and the was trial directed to be resumed from November 3.The trial was specially assigned to this court by the High Court at the request of the victim for a woman judge to try the case.The transfer plea stated that the trial court has not taken a decision on the application moved by the prosecution seeking to cancel the bail of Dileep on the ground of intimidating the victim and other witnesses in the case.Prominent Malayalam film actor Dileep is accused of hatching the criminal conspiracy behind the abduction and the sexual assault of the victim, also an actor, in a moving vehicle in the outskirts of Cochin city in February 2017.The prosecution has so far examined 80 witnesses in the case, including certain prominent actors of the Malayalam film industry. Some of them have reportedly turned hostile. The victim of the crime has also given her statement.The Special Prosecutor had taken exception to certain statements and remarks said to have been made by the judge during the course of witness examination.”The prosecution honestly believes that the prosecution as well as the victim will not get fair trial and justice from this court”, the application filed by Prosecution to defer the proceedings had said.”The prosecution intends to approach the honourable High Court for transfer of the trial of this case from this Honourable Court to any other court. Therefore, it is humbly submitted that the prosecution is not in a position to conduct the trial of the above case before this court on the above grounds and also on several other grounds which are not to be mentioned here to protect the interests of justice”, the plea had stated.Dismissing the proseuction’s application to stop the trial last month, Special Judge Honey M Varghese instructed the investigating officer to take steps to resume the trial from November 3 to complete the proceedings within the time frame set by the Supreme Court.”In the light of direction of Hon’ble Supreme Court to dispose of the case on or before 04.02.20201, investigating officer is directed to take urgent steps to resume the trial on 03.11.2020″, the Court ordered.In November 2019, while rejecting Dileep’s plea for a copy of the memory card allegedly containing the visuals of the sexual crime, the Supreme Court had ordered that the trial in the case should be completed expeditiously, “preferably within six months”.The Kerala Police had arrested Dileep in July 2017 alleging that he was the mastermind of the crime. After 88 days of custody, the High Court granted him bail.Click Here To Download Order[Read Order]Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more