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Bail plea hearing in Nitish Katara case deferred

Staff Reporter

The Delhi High Court had last week stayed the trial proceedings in the case till further orders

NEW DELHI: Vishal Yadav, one of the accused in the Nitish Katara murder case and nephew of the former Rajya Sabha MP, D.P. Yadav, on Wednesday moved the Delhi High Court seeking bail.

Justice B.D. Ahmed took up the bail application for hearing but he deferred it for Thursday as the arguing counsel for the petitioner failed to appear.

A Delhi court had last week refused to grant bail to Vikas Yadav, the main accused in the case and son of D.P. Yadav, and Vishal Yadav in the case.

Rejecting their bail applications, the Additional Sessions Judge, D.S. Poweriya, conducting trial of the case, had said there was sufficient material on record against the accused persons.

The Judge had also rejected the plea by counsel for the two accused, K.N. Balagopal, that the evidence of all the prosecution witnesses in the case had been recorded and that none were able to connect his clients directly to the crime.

"The quality of the evidence will be taken into consideration at the time of decision of the case; it has no relevance for the consideration of the bail applications,'' Mr. Poweriya had observed.

The Delhi High Court had last week stayed the trial proceedings in the case till further orders.

Justice H.R. Malhotra stayed the on-going recording of statements of the accused persons in the case on a petition by Neelam Katara, mother of Nitish Katara, who was allegedly murdered by Vikas Yadav and Vishal Yadav in February 2002.

Mr. Justice Malhotra directed the trial court to keep in abeyance the order allowing the prosecution in the case to drop Ms. Bharti Yadav, daughter of the former Rajya Sabha MP, D.P. Yadav, as a prosecution witness and not to record the statements of the accused till further orders.

In the petition, Ms. Katara sought stay on the recording of the statements of the accused persons and quashing of the decision by the prosecution to drop Ms.Yadav as a witness in the case.

Ms. Katara has also sought cancellation of the passport of Ms. Bharti to force her to come to the country and depose in the case.

She believes that the recording of evidence by Ms. Bharti was important to unravel the motive behind the murder.

The prosecution had last month dropped Ms. Bharti as a prosecution saying that the British government had refused to help the Indian authorities in her extradition to the country on the ground that Ms. Bharti had no case pending against her in that country. Vikas Yadav and Vishal Yadav are facing trial for allegedly kidnapping and later killing Nitish Katara in Ghaziabad in February 2002.

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