Delhi gets second courtroom for kids

Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai of the Supreme Court Wednesday inaugurated a vulnerable witness deposition complex for kids in the Saket district court here.

IANS| Last Updated: Sep 17, 2014, 23:34 PM IST

New Delhi: Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai of the Supreme Court Wednesday inaugurated a vulnerable witness deposition complex for kids in the Saket district court here.

Designed like a play-house with small tables, chairs and a toys corner, it is the second such complex for children in Delhi.

The inauguration ceremony was presided over by Chief Justice of Delhi High Court G. Rohini.

Justice Desai appreciated the efforts of court officials and said that such witness-friendly complex should be set up in the others part of the country as well.

She said that in most of the cases, witnesses turn hostile leading to acquittal of the accused. She said that vulnerable witnesses did not feel free to depose in the presence of the accused. 

In the Saket Court complex, the vulnerable witness will be escorted to the court by a facilitator in a vehicle. The vehicle will be provided by the court administration to build rapport and make the witness comfortable.

"The (vulnerable) witness will enter the court complex through a separate entry away from the public glare. The facility is developed in such a manner that while in the court complex including during recording of evidence, the accused and witness are never face to face," said an official of Saket court.

First of this kind of the facility was inaugurated Sep 16, 2012 in Karkardooma district court for vulnerable victims of sexual offences including children. Till now, around 700 witnesses have been examined.

The complex has a recreational room for children with a one-way glass. The vulnerable witnesses can record the statement through video-conferencing and can also be cross-examined inside the complex without facing the accused in the case. With the one-way glass, the accused can see the examination of the witness and be a part of the fair trial.