Delhi: In yet another twist to the 2012 Nirbhaya gang-rape case, a lawyer representing the two death row convicts has challenged the 'iron rod' theory and announced a Rs 10 lakh reward for anyone who can prove that the victim was violated with the same.
The remark from the lawyer has come at a time when hearing in the case has entered in the final stages in the Supreme Court, prompting the defence counsel to explore all possibilities to ensure that their clients escape death verdict.
Lawyer ML Sharma, who represents convicts - Mukesh and Pawan – has contested the police theory that the accused inserted an iron rod into the victim's private parts and pulled out her internal organs, said a report by India Today.
A trial court had earlier awarded the death penalty to four adult accused for the gruesome act. The 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist, dubbed Nirbhaya (meaning fearless), was sexually assaulted on a moving bus and died after sustaining serious internal injuries because of allegedly being violated with an iron bar during the attack.
The Delhi High Court upheld the sentence and the matter is now being heard in the Supreme Court. One of the six accused, Ram Singh, committed suicide in the city's Tihar Jail three years ago. Another, who was a juvenile when the crime took place, was sent for three years to a reform home and later released.
"The post-mortem report prepared by the Singapore hospital (where the victim received treatment) says the uterus and ovaries were intact. Going by the human anatomy, if a rod is inserted through the vagina, it cannot reach the intestines without breaking the uterus," Sharma had argued on Monday before a three-judge special bench led by Justice Dipak Misra.
The lawyer also announced a cash prize for anyone who can prove that intestines can be pulled out with a rod without damaging the uterus and ovaries.
Nirbhaya's mother Asha Devi, who was witnessing the hearing seated in the visitor's gallery, broke down as she heard Sharma reading her daughter's dying declaration.
The hearing in the case will continue on Friday.