A group of women hurled eggs at three accused in the photojournalist gang-rape case when they were being brought out of a court here today, while confusion prevailed over the age of another suspect whose family claimed he was a minor.
Shiraz Rehman Khan, Vijay Jadhav and Kasim Bengali faced the wrath of the women, who attacked them with eggs while they were being escorted to a jeep after being produced before the court in Mumbai.
The women, claiming to be members of a political party, raised slogans and demanded that alleged rapists be hanged. Earlier, the trio was further remanded in police custody till September 5.
The custody was extended after the crime branch told the court that they are yet to recover some clothes of the accused and hence their remand was required. Meanwhile, another accused could not be brought before the court after his family produced a "certificate" saying he is a minor. However, the police did not reveal as to what sort of certificate it is.
Asked if he will be produced in a juvenile court, Deputy Commissioner of Police and police spokesman Satyanarayan Choudhari said a discussion regarding this was currently underway. "As of now, we cannot say anything about which court he will be produced," he said.
In the meanwhile, Bengali, a history-sheeter, moved an application before Additional Metropolitan Magistrate Uday Padwad, saying he was a minor and cannot be produced before the regular court.
The judge, however, rejected his claim and observed that last year, when he was tried before a court in Girgaon in another case, he was treated as an adult. Also, his physical appearance does not suggest he is a minor.
The fifth accused, Salim Ansari, who was nabbed from Delhi, is already in police custody till September 5.
The 23-year-old photojournalist was sexually assaulted in defunct Shakti Mills compound near Mahalaxmi on the evening of August 22.
Image: A protest in Mumbai against the gang rape of a photojournalist
Photograph: Sahil Salvi