New Delhi: The trial in the January 14 gang-rape case of a 51-year-old Danish tourist has hit a roadblock with a Delhi court exploring ways to get her presence for recording of statement in the absence of mutual legal assistance treaty between India and Denmark.
The Danish woman was sexually assaulted allegedly by eight persons, including two juveniles, on the night of January 14, 2014 at a secluded place in the vicinity of a colony near New Delhi Railway Station.
Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Kaveri Baweja directed the investigating officer (IO) of the case to furnish a report regarding the procedure to secure the victim's presence before the court for recording of her statement.
The court's direction came after the IO informed it that the summon issued to the woman has returned unserved as India does not have a mutual legal assistance treaty (MLAT) with Denmark.
"...On going through the guidelines (of the Ministry of Home Affairs), it is noticed that India has MLAT with only 25 countries. The victim in the present case is to be summoned from Denmark. As per guidelines of the Ministry of Home Affairs, India does not have MLAT with Denmark.
"Accordingly, the IO is directed to verify the procedure which is required to be followed in cases where India does not have MLAT from the countries from where the witness is required to be summoned. Let report to this effect be furnished by the IO," the judge said.
During the hearing, the IO placed on record a copy of guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The police, in a charge sheet, have said that the eight persons, all vagabonds, had robbed and gangraped the Danish tourist at knife-point on the night of January 14 after leading her to a secluded spot close to the Divisional Railway Officers' Club near New Delhi Railway Station.