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"Facilitated Crime By Running Hotel Without Valid License, Not Keeping Records": Delhi HC Denies Anticipatory Bail To Hotel Owner In Minor Rape Case

Nupur Thapliyal
4 Sep 2021 8:25 AM GMT
Facilitated Crime By Running Hotel Without Valid License, Not Keeping Records: Delhi HC Denies Anticipatory Bail To Hotel Owner In Minor Rape Case
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The Delhi High Court has denied anticipatory bail to the owner of a hotel where a 16-year old minor girl was allegedly kept and raped for four days, after observing that he facilitated in the crime by running the hotel without a valid license and not keeping records of guests.Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar also observed that had the ID of victim and the primary accused been taken at the time...

The Delhi High Court has denied anticipatory bail to the owner of a hotel where a 16-year old minor girl was allegedly kept and raped for four days, after observing that he facilitated in the crime by running the hotel without a valid license and not keeping records of guests.
Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar also observed that had the ID of victim and the primary accused been taken at the time of booking, the minor girl would have been saved from rape.
"By running this type of hotel and without keeping a record of the guests staying in the hotel, the petitioner is facilitating in crime and prosecutrix is one such victim in this case," the Court said.
The FIR was registered on the complaint of victim's father under sec. 366, 376 and 109 of IPC and sec. 6, 17 and 21 of the POCSO Act.
It was alleged that the minor victim was kidnapped by one Jitender Pal, the primary accused, who took her to a hotel in Delhi's Nizamuddin area where she was raped multiple times.
According to the petitioner, it was submitted that being the owner of the hotel, he had no role to play in bookings which were done by the hotel staff.
"In the instant case, the victim 'X' is a girl aged around 16 years, and according to the victim she was kept in the hotel for about 4 days where she was repeatedly raped by the accused Jitender Pal. The petitioner, who is the owner of the hotel resides at the same place, and he cannot say that he was not aware as to what was going on in his hotel and he cannot put the entire blame on the staff of the hotel," the Court observed.
The Bench added:
"First of all, the hotel was being run by the petitioner without any valid license and no record of the guests was being maintained and no IDs were being taken. Had ID of the victim and the accused Jitender Pal would have been taken at the time of said booking then the minor girl would have been saved from rape."

Since, the testimony of the victim was yet to be recorded, looking into the allegations and the seriousness of the offence, and the role played by the petitioner, no ground for bail was made out.

Title: AJAY KUMAR v. THE STATE

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