M A I N   N E W S

Ruchika Case
No anticipatory bail for Rathore
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 8
Spelling fresh trouble for former Haryana DGP SPS Rathore, a sessions court here today denied him anticipatory bail in connection with the two fresh FIRs (levelling serious criminal charges) registered against him in the Ruchika molestation case. The applications of Sewa Singh, one of the co-accused, were also dismissed.

Finding merit in the contentions of complainants’ counsel, Additional District and Sessions Judge Sanjeev Jindal observed that the accused, being a former IPS officer, “enjoyed a considerable political clout. Therefore, the possibility of tampering with the evidence and intimidating the witnesses could not be ruled out, as could be inferred from his previous conduct”.

Notably, Rathore had moved court for anticipatory bail on December 30 following registration of two fresh FIRs against him on the complaint of Ruchika’s father Subhash Girhotra and his son Ashu Girhotra. The FIRs included attempt to murder, illegal detention and forging of documents charges.

Pronouncing the judgement reserved after the arguments in the case concluded yesterday, the court held that the accused could not be granted anticipatory bail seeing the seriousness and gravity of the offences alleged to have been committed (by him).

Regarding the custodial interrogation of Rathore, the Judge said: “This court also finds merit in the contentions raised by the counsel for the complainants that since the criminal conspiracies were not hatched by sitting in the drawing rooms in the presence of the witnesses, so the same can be unearthed only through the custodial interrogation of the accused.”

Meanwhile, Anand Prakash, the father of Ruchika’s friend Aradhana, who was present in the court, demanded the arrest of Rathore, at least as of now, on the basis of denial of anticipatory bail to him. The counsel of Girhotras and Prakashs, Pankaj Bhardwaj aired the same views saying the police “had been biased since the very beginning and favoured Rathore”.




Govt still going slow: Court

Under fire for delaying the probe in Ruchika molestation case for over a decade, the Haryana government is still going slow, observed a Panchkula court today ruling it “disgusting”.

Virtually passing strictures on the state for not filing reply to the anticipatory bail applications of Rathore, Additional District and Sessions Judge Sanjeev Jindal observed that “this court would like to place on record that the conduct of the state of Haryana in not filing the reply to the present bail applications and seeking adjournment to the sufficient time for filing reply, even after the availing of 6 days time, was baffling and disgusting. It gives a clear-cut impression that either the law officers or police officers of the state are incompetent or they are intentionally dilly-dallying the matter.”

It was yesterday only when public prosecutor NK Goel, during arguments in the case, sought sufficient time for reply of the state. Issuing notice to the state, the court on 1st January, asked to submit its reply on January 6.

Moreover, in view of the specific allegations leveled in both the FIRs, it was the burdened and legal duty of the state to oppose both the bail applications tooth and nail, thereby seeking custodial interrogation of the accused, instead of seeking time for the reply, observed the court.

Further pulling the law officers and the police officers of the state, justice Jindal observed that, “Besides, their oblivion attitude or incompetence is also reflected when they did not bother to induct Section 466 of the IPC in both the FIRs in spite of the fact that specific allegations have been leveled in both the FIRs that disclose prima facie the alleged commission of the offence as mentioned in the aforesaid Section, which is generally attracted when injury involves other than the economic loss and harm caused to any person in body, mind, reputation etc. Instead they went ahead with Section 467 of the IPC that primarily relates to forgery of document relating to monetary transactions, valuable security and wills etc.”

Thus, the conduct of the state in this respect becomes deplorable and as such, is hereby, condemned by this court in the strongest possible words, said justice Jindal.



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