A special fast-track court in Delhi on Saturday framed charges against the five men accused of brutally gangraping and murdering the 23-year-old medical student in Delhi on December 16, last year.
The accused have been charged with 13 offences under 13 sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that include murder, gangrape, robbery, destruction of evidence, unnatural sex and criminal conspiracy.
The court charged the accused under the following sections of the IPC:
1) Section 365: Kidnapping or abducting any person with intent to secretly and wrongfully confine a person.
2) Section 376(2)g: Committing gang rape.
3) Section 377: Unnatural offences
4) Section 307: Attempt to murder
5) Section 394: Voluntarily causing hurt in committing robbery
6) Section 395: Punishment for dacoity
7) Section 396: Dacoity with murder
8) Section 397: Robbery, or dacoity with attempt to cause death or grievous hurt
9) Section 412: Dishonestly receiving property stolen
10) Section 201: Destruction of evidence or giving false information to screen offender
11) Section 120B: Punishment of criminal conspiracy
12) Section 34: Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention
13) Section 302: Punishment for murder
The sixth accused in the case will be tried under Juvenile Justice laws as he was under 18 when he committed the crime. The Juvenile Justice Board has declared him a minor, rejecting the plea from the Delhi police for a bone test to determine his exact age. According to his school certificate, he was 17 years and six months old.
However, the family of the victim wants the sixth accused, described as the most brutal in the chargesheet by the Delhi Police, like an adult and be given severest punishment.
Section 2 (k) of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000, defines a juvenile as a person who has not completed 18 years of age.
The present juvenile act states, a minor can be kept only in a correction home and will receive maximum punishment up to three years, which means the sixth accused in the Delhi gang-rape case will not be tried in court or face imprisonment.
Meanwhile, the five accused in the gang-rape case have pleaded not guilty to the charges framed by the special fast-track court. The next hearing will take place on Tuesday.
The 23-year-old medical student was brutally gangraped and assaulted by six people on Dec 16, 2012, in a moving bus in Delhi when she was returning home with her male friend. The incident triggered nationwide protests demanding justice for the victim and stringent laws against atrocities on women. The victim succumbed to injuries at a hospital in Singapore on December 29.