Uber cab rape case: Survivor identifies driver in court

New Delhi: US-based cab service provider Uber's driver, who is facing trial in a rape case, was today identified in a Delhi court by the victim, a 25-year-old woman executive.

During the trial, which commenced today, the victim's statement was recorded before Additional Sessions Judge Kaveri Baweja in an in-camera proceeding.

The woman, who came to the court wearing a burqa, appeared as the first prosecution witness in the case.

Her deposition remained inconclusive today and it will continue tomorrow when she will be cross-examined by the counsel for accused Shiv Kumar Yadav, 32. During the hearing, Yadav was also present inside the courtroom.

According to court sources, the woman while recording her statement identified Yadav as the one who had raped her on the night of December 5, 2014 when she had hired the cab and was returning to her home in Delhi's Inderlok area.

Sources said the woman recalled her statement recorded before a magistrate under section 164 of the CrPC in which she had said that on the day of incident, after finishing her office work she had gone to Gurgaon for a party with friends and had booked a Uber cab for returning home.

She boarded the cab, which was being driver by Yadav, from Vasant Vihar area and felt asleep in the car, she had told the magistrate, adding that when she woke up she found Yadav was also sitting on the back seat and when she tried to raise an alarm, he slapped her repeatedly and threatened to insert a rod.

The woman had said that the car was stopped at a secluded place and Yadav raped her and dropped her to her house. The court had on January 13 framed charges against Yadav and ordered that the trial will proceed on a daily basis.

The court had framed charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code for alleged offences of endangering a woman's life while raping her, kidnapping her with an intent to compel her for marriage, criminally intimidating and causing hurt.

The police had filed the charge sheet 19 days after the incident on the night of December 5 last year when the 25-year-old victim, who was working for a finance company in Gurgaon, was headed back home.

Earlier, Yadav had created a drama in the court alleging that he would not sign the charge order sheet as arguments on framing of charges were not advanced in his presence.

Later, after being assured by the judge that nothing wrong was being done to him and legal procedures were being followed by the court, he had agreed and gave it in writing that he was signing the order on charge at his own will.

Yadav had refused to undergo test identification parade (TIP), saying the woman had already seen his photograph in Uber's website and she would definitely identify him. TIP is a process under the criminal law through which a victim of a crime identifies an accused.

As per the charge sheet, the woman had identified Yadav as the one who had raped her, when she was coming out of a court room in Tis Hazari District courts after recording her statement on December 8, 2014. Yadav was then coming out from another court where he was produced after his arrest.

Yadav was arrested on December 7 from Mathura in a joint operation by Delhi and Uttar Pradesh police. In the charge sheet, police relied on forensic evidence and also placed on record the route map of the car inb which the offence was committed.

Police had also told the court that Yadav was hired by Uber, and claimed that the firm had not verified his particulars. Police has lodged a case of cheating against the firm.

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