Monday, Nov 25, 2013, 13:14 IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: DNA Web Team
A special CBI is likely to announce the quantum of punishment for Rajesh and Nupur Talwar, who were held guilty for the murder of their teenaged daughter Aarushi and their domestic help Hemraj at their home on the intervening night of May 16-17, 2008.
As soon as the verdict was announced, the duo and the family broke down and were clearly upset with the decision.
The parents convicted under sections 302 and 201, while Rajesh Talwar also convicted on additional charge under Section 203 for filing a false FIR. They have been taken into custody after the verdict. "We are deeply disappointed, hurt and anguished over conviction," they said in a statment. "We refuse to feel defeated and will continue to fight for justice," they said.
"There was no evidence, dissapointed with the verdict. It's wrong," stated Talwars' lawyer Satyaketu Singh.
On the other hand, the CBI lawyer on Aarushi case, RK Saini, stated, "Court said according to the circumstances there is no one else who could commit the crime."
* Dinesh Talwar, brother of Rajesh, told reporters outside the court that they would appeal against the verdict in the Allahabad High Court.
* The Talwar couple has been kept in separate special cells in the jail, which will be out of reach for other inmates. Due to security reasons, they will be kept separate from other inmates for some days," Dasna Jail Superintendent Viresh Raj Sharma told IANS.
Sharma said Nupur has been kept inside the women's barrack but her cell is separate from other inmates while Rajesh has been kept in a separate cell in a special barrack.
"After their medical examination, both of them were taken to their respective cells. Each of them have been given a blanket, a rug, a mug and a plate to eat," Sharma said.
* , Satyaketu Singh, on Monday said, “There is no evidence. We are disappointed with the verdict. This order is wrong and illegal.”
* Meanwhile, senior advocate Abha Singh said, “This was a gruesome incident. It was an open and shut case,
* Aarushi's friend Fiza Jha, described the verdict as disappointing on Monday. “This has gone from bad to worse. It will be tragic if the parents don't get justice in the higher courts,” she said.
* The Talwars are now in police custody and have been taken to Ghaziabad's Dasna jail.
* The two were taken into custody immediately after the verdict.The court will hear the arguments on the quantum of sentence on Tuesday.
* In a statement issued after the verdict, the dentist couple said, “We are deeply disappointed, hurt and anguished for being convicted for a crime that we have not committed. We refuse to feel defeated and will continue to fight for justice.”
* Defence lawyer Satyaketu Singh said the judgement was wrong in law and would be appealed against in the High Court.
Nearly five-and-a-half years after the sensational killings of teenager Aarushi Talwar and domestic help Hemraj, a special CBI court pronounced its verdict.
Special Judge S Lal, who is retiring soon, gave his decision after a 15-month-long trial of dentist couple, both out on bail at present, on charges of murder and destruction of evidence in the killing of their 14-year-old daughter and servant on the intervening night of May 15-16, 2008 at their Jalvayu Vihar residence in Noida.
The probe followed a sine curve with varied theories from the investigating agencies--Uttar Pradesh Police and CBI--starting with father Rajesh Talwar being a suspect to the domestic servants of their friends and back to the dentist and his wife.
Security was beefed up outside the special CBI court premises. "Three DSPs, three station house officers, 90 constables and one platoon of PAC have been deployed outside the court," SP (City), Ghaziabad, Muniraj said.
The case has been under intense media glare throughout and in August 2009 the Supreme Court restrained the media from sensational or scandalous reporting of the matter even as the Talwars accused CBI of changing the course of investigation and purported leaks "damaging" their reputation.
Uttar Pradesh Police started its probe on the premise that Hemraj had killed Aarushi and escaped from the crime scene.
After discovery of Hemraj's body on the terrace of Talwars' flat next day i.e. on May 16, 2008, under dramatic circumstances, the needle of suspicion came on Rajesh who was taken into custody by the UP Police.
The sensational allegations made by UP Police that killer was none other than father of the teenager who acted in rage after finding Aarushi and Hemraj in "objectionable but not compromising" position accentuated media attention.
Amid growing media scrutiny, the then UP Chief Minister Mayawati handed over the case to CBI.
A CBI team under Joint Director Arun Kumar concluded that murders were allegedly committed by Krishna Thadarai- help at Talwar's clinic, his friend Rajkumar-- a domestic servant with Praful and Anita Durrani who were Talwars' friends, and Vijay Mandal, driver of Talwars' neighbour.
These findings were trashed by the then CBI Director Ashwani Kumar who poked holes in the theory by underlining loopholes in the arguments given by Arun Kumar.
In September 2009, Kumar constituted a new team under Joint Director Javeed Ahmed and the then SP Neelabh Kishore to look into the case afresh with freedom to choose their team members for the case.
After nearly an year of intense probe, the new team cleared the servants and hinted at the role of Rajesh Talwar on the basis of circumstantial evidence.
The team filed a closure report in the case on December 29, 2010 citing "insufficient evidence" which was rejected by District Magistrate Priti Singh who ordered that Talwars should stand trial in the case. "In such a case where the incident has happened inside home, visible evidence cannot be ignored," the court said.
The Talwars had subsequently moved the Allahabad High Court, which dismissed their pleas to quash the trial court summons and the proceedings initiated against them.
The trial in the sensational murders started on June 11, 2012. The case went on for nearly one and a half year during which prosecution led by CBI's Deputy Legal Advisor R K Saini presented 39 witnesses to buttress their case while defence team presented seven witnesses.
On January 25, 2011, Rajesh was attacked by a youth with a meat cleaver on the Ghaziabad court premises.
The action in court at times had shades of a Bollywood drama when defence lawyer performed a demonstration of the attack of golf club on motorbike helmet and a dragging scene by putting a man in a bed sheet before the judge, claiming that dentist couple would have been unable to drag Hemraj's body to terrace.
The prosecution started its final arguments on October 10 summing up their case against Rajesh and Nupur running into nearly seven days while defence started its arguments on October 24 and completed it on November 12.
CBI pressed the theory that during the night of murders there was no evidence of any forced entry and out of four people--Aarushi, Hemraj, Rajesh and Nupur--only two were alive hence circumstantial evidence pointed towards the dentist couple's involvement.
Saini strongly put forward circumstantial evidence--no outsider entry, last scene theory, dressing of crime scene, destruction of evidence, tampering with Aarushi's body and cover up of Hemraj's body with cooler panel on the terrace--which, he claimed, go against Talwar couple.
"Sudden and grave provocation theory, as told by the defence, is not our theory," Saini said adding that Rajesh Talwar with golf club in his hand entered Aarushi's room in order to commit crime.
"Talwars tried to mislead this court by creating sudden and grave provocation theory at final stage of this case," Saini had told the court.
Quoting from Talwars' then maid Bharti's statement, he argued when the maid reached for work on May 16, 2008 morning the outermost door was locked from "inside" which shows outsider could not be involved in the crime and it was the handiwork of someone who had been present in the house.
Defence lawyer Tanveer Ahmed Mir countered it saying the latch of their iron gate was locked from "outside" and not from inside besides Hemraj's room was next to the main entrance of the flat, with one door opening into the flat which makes it clear that anyone can access the flat through his room.
During final arguments, Saini told the court that postmortem doctors of both victims in their statements had said that the injuries seen on Aarushi's forehead and Hemraj's head are possible with the golf club.
Refuting the claims, Mir said if CBI case is believed Hemraj's injuries by golf club would have resulted in a pool of blood which was not the case at the crime scene.
"...but in this case no blood, no DNA, no biological fluid and no finger prints which belonged to Hemraj were found in the Aarushi's room and it suggests that Hemraj was not murdered in Aarushi's room," Mir had told the court.
The defence also claimed injuries inflicted with a golf club would have resulted in a "depressed fracture" where as the Aarushi's post-mortem reports show a line fracture.
A major set-back for CBI was when one of its crucial witnesses Bharti, then maid for Talwars who was first to arrive at crime scene, told the court that she deposed in a way she was told.