Watpora Acid Attack Case: Accused goes under ‘Record of Examination’ by Court, enters into defence

Mudasir Yaqoob

SRINAGAR — The Srinagar Court has recorded the statement of main accused in the acid attack case on a girl here in February 2022 after incriminating material were found against him during the trial.

The Principal District and Sessions Court Srinagar put 55 questions before the accused to which he recorded the statement and sought permission from the court for producing evidence in his defence.

The main accused Sajjad Ahmed Rather was represented by advocate Aamir Masoodi and another accused by advocate Waseem Ahmad. Rather recently appointed Masoodi his counsel in the case.

The trial of the court is going on fast track basis.
“Under the provisions of law, the court puts the accused for his defence once the prosecution closes evidence and the court finds incriminating evidence against accused,” said advocate Aamir Masoodi.

“For the purpose of enabling the accused personally to explain any circumstances appearing in the evidence against him, the Court puts such questions to him as the Court considers necessary after closure of evidence by prosecution,” Masoodi said while referring to provisions of law.

A 24-year-old girl was attacked with acid outside her home in Wantpora area on 1 February, this year. She sustained severe burn injuries on her face.

The Jammu and Kashmir police had arrested three accused and sealed a shop for illegal sale of acid.

After the preliminary investigation and technical analysis, a Special Investigation Team (SIT) led by Superintendent of Police Raja Zuhaib said the victim, who is from Srinagar’s Eidgah area, had rejected the engagement proposal of the accused who started stalking her.

As per prosecution, on 1 February accused took break from work and went on a two-wheeler to the place where the girl used to work. As the victim was heading back home late in the evening, acid was thrown on he.

The Jammu and Kashmir Police had filed a 1,000-page charge sheet against three people — Rather and Mohammad Saleem Kumar, alias Tota, and a juvenile.

The accused were charged under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and 326-A (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by use of acid) of the IPC.

The charge sheet was filed within three weeks of the incident to ensure swift and exemplary punishment to the accused and to deter those who may be having such “barbaric” tendencies.