The attack set off nationwide protests about India’s treatment of women and spurred the government to hurry through a package of laws to protect them.
The rape victim’s family said that with such a strong case for the prosecution, they had expected Singh to be convicted and executed anyway.
‘‘He knew he was going to get the death penalty, and so he took his life,’’ the victim’s brother told the Times Now TV.
Singh’s death comes as the trial was deep underway. The four surviving defendants were briefly produced in court Monday.
K.T.S. Tulsi, a former top lawyer in the office of the solicitor general of India, said the suicide should have no impact on the trial, which is being held in a closed courtroom under a gag order that prevents news organizations from publishing details of the proceedings.
He said the death highlighted how important it is for society not to demonize people who have been accused but not convicted of crimes.
‘‘It is so unfortunate that the media goes on to presume that they are guilty and goes on to condemn them and demonize them to an extent that it makes the life of these people not worth living,’’ he said.
Associated Press reporters Manish Swarup and Ashok Sharma contributed to this report.
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