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Delhi rape: Friend to testify today

Posted on Jan 30, 03:59PM | IBNS

New Delhi, Jan 30 : The software engineer, who was beaten up and stripped on Dec 16 night as he tried to prevent the six accused from raping and brutalizing his 23-year-old friend now known as the Delhi braveheart, will testify on the delayed role of the police that night, before a government commission on Wednesday.

The software engineer is likely to testify on the role of the police which lost precious time in taking the victims to the hospital as they debated on who should take the charge of the bleeding naked couple.

The heinous crime that took place on a moving bus on Dec 16 last year, followed by the nationwide mass protest and the eventual death of the victim, has evoked the government to appoint two commissions, where one panel has been directed to review existing laws covering sexual offences.

The other panel headed by a retired Delhi High Court judge Usha Mehra, was given a deadline till March to suggest measures to be adopted to make the national capital a much "safer place" for women.

The panel also shouldered the responsibility to probe into delay of hospitalisation of the couple that eventually resulted into the death of the gang rape victim two weeks later.

Justice Mehra is reported to have summoned the brave heart's friend on Wednesday to testify his account.

In a television interview, he had stated in detail how the couple was thrown from the bus by their attackers.

He also said that many passers-by ignored them on seeing the couple lying bleeding and naked on the road.

Although three police vans reached the spot, the officers who accompanied them wasted precious time debating on whose jurisdiction the case applied to, leaving the couple to suffer in that condition for some more time before they were taken to the hospital, he had said.

His testimony, which triggered 7,000 suggestions via email, mail and in person from the public, could have induced the police to respond but it did not happen the same way as nobody shared the information about the police's alleged delay in taking the couple to the hospital.

Senior members of the police force have been questioned by the commission, said reports.

Justice Mehra, however, not only blamed the police for their inaction but also said she has enough evidence to prove the negligence of the Delhi government's transport department and the city's traffic police.

The school bus that was used to commit the gruesome act was witnessed to have still been plying on the roads.

"How could a vehicle which had been caught six times, still ply on the roads,'' a high-level official who testified for the commission was quoted as saying.