HC raps Raj Police for taking away woman who fled home to escape marriage
New delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday criticised the Rajasthan Police's act of taking away a woman from the national capital against her will in connection with a criminal case and said that her detention appeared to be illegal and the state government shall ensure no harm is caused to her. The high court said instead of taking away the 26-year-old woman to Rajasthan, the police could have got her statement recorded before the competent court in Delhi itself.
According to the petition, the woman was taken away from Delhi by the Rajasthan Police on Tuesday while she was having lunch in Jamia Nagar with her friends.
It appeared that her father made a police complaint in Dhaulpur, Rajasthan, which is also her place of work for the alleged offences of kidnapping, abduction to compel for marriage and wrongful confinement, the plea said.
It added that in pursuance of that FIR, Rajasthan Police came to Delhi and picked her up.
A bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rajnish Bhatnagar directed the Rajasthan government to ensure that the woman is not harmed by anyone including her parents and relatives, on whose behalf the FIR for abduction has allegedly been lodged.
We are perplexed to note that even though she was not the named accused, she has been taken in custody by the Rajasthan Police, statedly against her will. Her statement could have been recorded before the competent court in Delhi itself, instead of removing her from Delhi," the bench said.
The high court was hearing a petition filed by the woman, through her pairokar (advocate), seeking her own production and safety.
The high court issued notice to Rajasthan government through itsResident Commissioner in Delhi and also directed the Rajasthan police to be represented before it on Thursday.
We also direct respondent No.2 (Rajasthan government) to produce her through a video link before us for our interaction with her.
We direct respondent No.2 to ensure that no harm comes to her, while she is detained in custody as stated by counsel for the petitioner, which, prima facie, appears to us, to be illegal, the bench said.
It also directed the Rajasthan government to ensure that the woman's phone which was taken by the authorities, is returned to her. Respondent no.2 shall also ensure that no harm comes to her from her parents, or other relatives till she is produced before us through a video link, it said.
The high court allowed the plea to implead the woman's father as a party to the petition. The court noted that the woman is not named an accused in the FIR, but is stated to be the victim of the alleged offences.
According to the petitioner's counsel, she is being moved from one place to another in Rajasthan and her mobile phone has been taken away from her, disabling her from contacting any person or seeking any help or assistance for her