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Delhi HC levies costs of Rs. 40, 000 on woman for abuse of process of court and wasting Court's time

Apoorva Mandhani
1 Oct 2015 3:51 AM GMT
Delhi HC levies costs of Rs. 40, 000 on woman for abuse of process of court and wasting Courts time
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Delhi High Court in a recent order, levied costs of Rs. 40, 000 on a woman for "abuse of the process of the Court and wastage of its precious time", by filing two petitions challenging the grant of bail and validity of investigations carried out against three men, whom she had accused of rape and molestation.

Justice Indermeet Kaur refused to interfere with the grant of bail and investigation and also quashed the charges framed against the two of them. She observed, "The ingredient "outrage her modesty" has not been described in the IPC. This Court is however of the considered view that the general and bald allegations made by the complainant in a complaint relating to an offence which has probably occurred more than 2-3 months earlier (dates not known) and the statement that some misact has been down by the petitioners by gestures which amounted to a humiliation, would not by itself makes out a prima facie case under Section 354 of the IPC for which the accused persons have been charged."

The woman had filed a complaint against her live-in partner, after finding out that he was already married and had children. She claimed that she had entered into the relationship in 2009, as the man had promised to marry her. She had also alleged molestation at the hands of two other men.

In her first petition, the woman had challenged the anticipatory bail granted to the man. She submitted that the bail had been granted on a wrong premise and on incorrect factual submissions. It was contended that there are wide powers with the Court to order cancellation of bail if there has been a miscarriage of justice, this being one such case.

The second petition prayed for re-investigation in the FIR, submitting that the investigation had not been carried out fairly. She drew the Court's attention to the vigilance report which was considered by the Trial Court. It was contended that this report should not have been considered for the purpose of grant of bail or investigation, as Inspector Shashi, through which the investigations had been carried out, was no longer vested with inquiry.

After the investigation was transferred to the local police station, she submitted that the subsequent investigating officer had relied on the previous report, despite the Vigilance Enquiry report having noted the fact that the previous officer could not have carried out any investigation. This, she alleged, had resulted in the chargesheet exonerating the accused almost completely.

The accused persons had submitted that the complainant had business dealings with them and had lodged a false complaint against them in order to extort money.

The High Court found no infirmity in the trial court order and refused to interfere with it. The Court noted that the ambit of parameters of grant of bail is wider than for cancellation of bail. The complainant had also not contended any misuse of process of Court or any influence being asserted on her. It hence refused to find any infirmity in the trial court order.

It also inferred that the investigation did not suffer from any infirmity. "This is clearly not a case where the petitioner has suffered prejudice; leave alone grave prejudice for which she is seeking reinvestigation," the Court observed.

Quashing the charges framed against two men, the Court observed, "A man is presumed to be innocent unless proven guilty. A person is also not to be asked to face trial and suffer not only the humiliation of a long protracted litigation but also cannot be asked to suffer the pressure of an exercise which on the factual matrix, as narrated above, would be an exercise in futility as the allegations in the complaint taken as a whole would not be sufficient to uphold the impugned order."

Read the Judgment here.

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