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Delhi High Court Refuses To Quash FIR Alleging Sexual Harassment At Workplace, Status Report On Investigation Sought

Nupur Thapliyal
5 March 2022 8:00 AM GMT
Delhi High Court Refuses To Quash FIR Alleging Sexual Harassment At Workplace, Status Report On Investigation Sought
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Refusing to quash an FIR alleging sexual harassment of a female employee at workplace, the Delhi High Court has sought a detailed status report from the Police under the signatures of the DCP concerned.Justice Mukta Gupta sought a detailed status report in the matter after carrying out a proper investigation.The Court was dealing with a petition seeking quashing of FIR registered under...

Refusing to quash an FIR alleging sexual harassment of a female employee at workplace, the Delhi High Court has sought a detailed status report from the Police under the signatures of the DCP concerned.

Justice Mukta Gupta sought a detailed status report in the matter after carrying out a proper investigation.

The Court was dealing with a petition seeking quashing of FIR registered under Sections 354(A), 354(D), 506 and 509 of IPC on the complaint of the woman, being respondent No.2, on the ground that the parties had entered into a settlement.

The FIR stated that the complainant was working in a government office and from the year 2016 to 2018, the petitioner was working as a Deputy Director General in the office. However, the petitioner was neither the immediate senior of the complainant nor the reporting officer.

Despite the same, it was alleged that the petitioner used to repeatedly call the complainant to his chamber. When she made a complaint to the senior officer i.e. the Additional Director General, the complainant was asked to ignore the conduct of the petitioner. The FIR therefore alleged that the petitioner used to follow her in the corridor.

It was the complainant's case that in order to avoid the petitioner, while she was moving through the corridor if the complainant entered some room, the petitioner would keep standing in that corridor and waited for her to come out of the room and then follow her.

It was alleged that the petitioner made sexual overtures to the complainant, asking her to marry him or be his girlfriend and when the complainant did not pay any heed to the requests of the petitioner, the petitioner started calling her at odd hours and sending her messages. When the complainant wanted an action and narrated the incidents to the senior officer, it was stated that the petitioner would soon be transferred and thus, she should not give the complaint.

In the meantime, the petitioner was promoted and transferred to Muradnagar.

While the harassment continued, in December 2017, the complainant suddenly received reduction in the pay bill on the ground that she had taken lot of leaves. Thereafter, it was stated that the complainant was pressurized to take her case back and in return, the petitioner would pay her the money.

The complainant, who was present in person in the Court, therefore stated that she had given copies of the screenshots of the messages received to the Investigating Officer.

It was also stated that in order to harass her, the dates on which the Biometric attendance machine was not working were counted as holidays taken by her and against the same and an amount of Rs. 19,000 was deducted and that Rs. 96,000 was still outstanding dues against her.

On the other hand, the Additional Standing Counsel appearing on behalf of the State informed the Court that the petitioner had already been indicted in the enquiry conducted by a Committee constituted under the Vishakha guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court.

"At this stage, this Court is not inclined to quash the FIR in question on the basis of the settlement and it would be appropriate to have a detailed status report under the signatures of the DCP concerned after carrying out a proper investigation, before disposing off the petition," the Court said.

The matter will now be heard on March 24.

Case Title: P. MOHANTY v. STATE & ANR.

Click Here To Read Order 


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