Sister Abhaya case: Witness who turned hostile admits to truth after prodding

A key witness Achamma, during the examination in court on Friday first said ‘no’ or ‘I don’t know’ to several questions, but later said her initial statements in the case were true.
Sister Abhaya case: Witness who turned hostile admits to truth after prodding
Sister Abhaya case: Witness who turned hostile admits to truth after prodding
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In yet another twist in the Sister Abhaya murder case trial, a key witness who had turned hostile confessed that her initial statements given to the Crime Branch and CBI probe teams were true and genuine, after some prodding from prosecution officials.

A report in the Times of India says that it was the aggressive prodding and a bit of emotional blackmailing by the CBI prosecutor which prompted witness Achamma to make the confession.

Achamma had been the kitchen supervisor at the Pius X convent where the murder took place.

Achamma was one among the first to know about the nun's disappearance on March 27, 1992. She had told investigators that she saw a chappal of Abhaya and a misplaced axe in the kitchen in the morning after the crime. But during the examination on Friday, she said that she didn't remember anything of that sort and most of her answers to CBI prosecutor Advocate Navas’s questions, were either 'no' or 'I don't know'.

The prosecutor then got a bit tactical by saying that a curse would befall her if she didn’t reveal the facts to find out the truth behind the crime. The prosecutor also alleged that Achamama was parroting a tutored version.

Navas’s questions included those on Achamma’s petitions both at the High Court and Supreme Court against the special investigation agency's move to do a narco analysis test on her.

Achamma said it could be that someone else had paid the fees on her behalf for Advocate Harish Salve- the senior counsel who had appeared for her at the Supreme Court.

Special Judge K Sanilkumar also asked the witness to say the truth and told defence lawyer J Jose not to force his version through her words.

Finally, after the court declared that the witness turned hostile, the CBI prosecutor was allowed for a brief examination during which he read out points from Achamma's original statement and asked if those statements were given in good faith and genuineness to which she said yes.

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