Kochi: The examination of the witnesses in the 2017 actress assault case will resume on February 16.
The trial court will also pronounce the verdict on the prosecution's plea seeking to cancel the bail of actor Dileep, eighth accused in the case, for allegedly influencing the witnesses.
The examination of the witnesses had been stalled two weeks ago after Dileep's lawyer tested positive for COVID-19.
The trial into the case began in January 2020 and 82 witnesses have been examined so far. Around 230 witnesses remain to be examined, but the procedure had been delayed due to various reasons such as the frequent pleas filed by the defendant, COVID-19 lockdown and the resignation of the first prosecutor.
Though the High Court and the Supreme Court had set deadlines for completing the trial, the trial court had got the dates revised twice.
The trial court has again approached the Supreme Court, seeking more time to complete the trial in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ten accused, including actor Dileep and Pulsar Suni, are facing trial in the case. One of them, 10th accused Vishnu, has submitted a plea in court, seeking permission to give a confessional statement and turn approver. The court will consider his plea on February 15.
The actress was assaulted in a moving car near Kochi on February 17, 2017. Dileep was arrested in July 2017 but was later released on bail.