Three of the five accused in the gang-rape and murder of the 23-year-old girl in a bus will plead not guilty to the charges and claim trial, advocates seeking to represent them said today.
Advocate ML Sharma, who appeared in the Metropolitan Magistrate's court yesterday and offered to defend the accused amidst protests from the Saket bar, has been engaged by prime accused Ram Singh, his brother Mukesh Singh and Akshay Kumar Singh alias Thakur.
Another advocate V K Anand, who had also showed up in the court wanting to be an amicus curiae, has also been engaged by the Ram Singh.
"They will plead not guilty to the charges levelled against them in the charge sheet. They want to face the trial," said Sharma and Anand echoed a similar stand.
Magistrate Namrita Aggarwal had yesterday posted the matter for Jan 10 after ordering that proceedings will be held in camera and media should not report them.
A senior Tihar jail official said the accused were illiterate undertrial prisoners. "Generally in a sensational case, many advocates come forward to represent the accused. Being illiterate and already scared, the accused might have signed even more than two advocates. It is an issue between the advocate and the prisoner," he said.