Charges against Rwandan students in India to be dropped

The trial of the three Rwandan university students arrested in India, in January, for allegedly “using vulgar words” against an Indian lady, will soon be settled out of court, it has emerged.

The trial of the three Rwandan university students arrested in India, in January, for allegedly “using vulgar words” against an Indian lady, will soon be settled out of court, it has emerged.

Mucyo Rutishisha, an official at the Rwanda High Commission in New Delhi, told The New Times last week that “negotiations are underway between the students and the accuser’s family.”

“They have agreed to withdraw the accusation. The police which had deposited the ‘investigation report’ will have to formally declare to a Judge, in front of the accuser, that all charges are lifted. And this will happen on April 26,” Rutishisha said.

“Conclusion of this case has been postponed several times due to procedural reasons. The woman agreed that the boys are innocent of any wrong doing. They are pursuing classes.”

The trio first appeared in court on January 17 and pleaded not guilty to all charges. They again appeared in court in February when prosecution argued the case against them.

Shortly after the pre-trial hearing, in January, the Rwandan High Commission said there was a possibility that the case might be settled out of court especially since, “according to their lawyer, the Indian legal system provides for such a route.”

The students are answering charges of “eve-teasing” or the use of vulgar language against a lady. The students committed the alleged offence in Jalandhar, a city in the north-western Indian state of Punjab. 

They reportedly told court that they met Ms Ashish Sharma, 35, as she walked on the street at around 4:00pm and asked her for directions to a location they were looking for. On seeing that she was visibly frightened and agitated, the accused reportedly drove away from her, only to be arrested half an hour later by police officers. 

 

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