Five men charged with the brutal gang-rape and murder of a student in New Delhi will appear in court for the first time Monday after police said they had forensic evidence to link them to the killing.
The five, who could face the death penalty if convicted, are also charged with kidnap, robbery and conspiracy over the attack on December 16 that sparked protests in India and soul-searching about levels of violence against women.
The defendants have been named as Ram Singh, Mukesh Singh, Vijay Sharma, Akshay Thakur and Pawan Gupta.
A sixth accused, who is 17, is to be tried in a separate court for juveniles.
It normally takes months for the prosecution to assemble such a case, but the legal proceedings are getting under way barely a week after the 23-year-old medical student died of her injuries in a Singapore hospital.
The government, sensitive to criticism that a sluggish justice system often compounds the agony of victims, has pledged to fast-track the case against the defendants who are aged between 17 and 35. They all live in Delhi.
A spokesman for Tihar jail, where the group have been held since their arrest three weeks ago, said they would be produced before the court in the mid-morning.