Expelled BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar on Monday sought interim bail from the Delhi High Court in connection with a case in which he was sentenced to life term for raping a minor girl in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao in 2017.
A bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Talwant Singh directed that the case be listed before another bench for hearing on December 22. “List this application before a bench in which one of us, namely, Justice Talwant Singh, is not a member subject to obtaining directions of the Chief Justice,” the court ordered. The court was informed that Sengar was seeking interim bail for two months to attend his daughter's wedding which is to take place on February 8.
The ceremonies for the wedding would begin on January 18, the counsel for Sengar said. Sengar's appeal challenging the trial court's verdict in the Unnao rape case is already pending in the high court. He has sought quashing of the December 16, 2019 judgement of the trial court which convicted him. Sengar has also sought setting aside of the December 20, 2019 order sentencing him to imprisonment till remainder of his life.
The trial court had convicted Sengar under various provisions including section 376 (2) of IPC which deals with the offence of rape committed by a public servant who "takes advantage of his official position and commits rape on a woman in his custody as such public servant or in the custody of a public servant subordinate to him". It had awarded him the maximum punishment of life term with a rider that the convict will remain in jail for "remainder of his natural biological life" and also imposed an exemplary fine of Rs 25 lakh on him.
The girl was kidnapped and raped by Sengar in 2017 when she was a minor. The trial, which started on August 5, 2019 after it was transferred from Unnao to Delhi on the Supreme Court's directions, was carried on a day-to-day basis. The apex court, taking cognisance of the rape survivor's letter written to the then Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, had on August 1, 2019 transferred all five cases registered in connection with the Unnao rape incident from a Lucknow court in Uttar Pradesh to the court in Delhi with directions to hold trial on a daily basis and completing it within 45 days.