Another prosecution witness, Karan Rajput, turned hostile in the Jessica Lal murder case on Wednesday.
Rajput denied that he was in Delhi on April 29, 1999, the day when model Jessica was allegedly shot in the head by Manu Sharma. He was deposing before Additional Sessions Judge H R Malhotra.
Earlier two other witnesses Shyan Munshi, a bartender at the Tamarind Court restaurant and Shiv Dass Yadav, an electrician, had turned hostile and denied identifying Manu Sharma or having seen the accused shooting Lal.
Lal's family members, who were present in the court, were visibly shocked when Rajput denied that he ever visited Qutub Colonade, where Tamarind Court is located, on the fateful night.
"Yes, it is true that my sister's son Jitender worked in the Tamarind Court and I had visited him a couple of times. But I usually used to visit his house and not his place of work," he said.
When prosecution counsel N K Saxena asked him if he had told the police that on April 29,1999, he had come from Allahabad to Delhi and went to meet his nephew, Rajput said that it was incorrect.
"I was in Dasua in Punjab on that day," he said.
The rest of his deposition was a mere formality as he went on
denying everything that was read out to him from his statement given to the investigating officer of the case.
He denied that he saw some youngsters including the main
accused coming to the bar and asking for liquor. He also denied that there were two girls, Malini Ramani and Lal at the bar and they had told
the accused wearing red T-shirt that bar was closed and
no liquor would be served. "It is incorrect to say
that I told the police that the accused took out
a pistol and fired first in the air and then shot Lal in the forehead," Rajput
said in his testimony.
He denied having identified five pictures of the accused persons shown to him by the investigating officers. "I was questioned by the
police but I did not make any statement. Nothing was
written in my presence. It is not correct that I gave
my statement to the police on May 29, 1999. It was
much later that the police called me. I was not aware
that I had been listed as a witness in the case till I
read my name in the newspapers," he said.
When the prosecution asked why he did not file any application before the court claiming that he has been wrongly mentioned as a
witness, Rajput said that once he received the summons he thought it was his duty to come before the court.
He also denied that after Manu Sharma shot Jessica, he
tried to get away and Bina Ramani tried to stop him and screamed "Stop, this man. He has shot Jessica."
He said he came to know of the incident through the newspapers.
During his one and a half hour deposition he denied
most of the suggestions made by the prosecution lawyer
with a straight face.
Two other witnesses Malani Ramani and Parikshit
Sagar, who were also present in court, could not be examined because of
lack of time.
The judge has fixed July 4 and 5 as the next date of
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