After taking suo motu cognizance of a district judge’s illegal confinement of his law graduate daughter, the Patna High Court has directed the police to produce the woman before it.
The direction was made today when the matter was taken up by the Bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Rajeev Ranjan Prasad. The Bench has directed that the woman be produced in the chambers of Chief Justice Menon tomorrow at 2:15 pm.
In its order, the Bench stated,
“We have taken cognizance of the matter taking note of the seriousness of the issue as was reflected in the article concerned which formed the basis for taking cognizance of the matter.”
The Court then directed the Senior Superintendent of Police, Patna to constitute a team of officers having at least two lady officers to escort the woman along with her parents and to produce her in chambers at 2:15 pm tomorrow.
As reported earlier, the local police had failed to perform its duty. A Protection Officer had refused to take down the statement dictated to her on June 20. Whereas the woman emphasised on her pleas to leave her house, the officer was more concerned with making her sign an incomplete statement only reflecting general statements pertaining to her employment concerns.
In this light, the Court has held,
“Keeping in view the nature of the material available in the report which was placed before us, we are constrained to direct the Senior Superintendent of Police, Patna to take action in the matter and we are not at present inclined to take the assistance of the police officers of the District who are dealing with the matter.”
The Bench then proceeded to appoint advocate Anukriti Jaipuriyar as Amicus Curiae in the matter.
The judge in question, Subhash Chandra Chaurasia, is a District and Sessions Judge from Khagaria district. He had placed his daughter – who is a graduate of Chanakya National Law University (CNLU) Patna – under house arrest to prevent her from meeting her lover, Siddharth, who is a lawyer based in Delhi.
The woman confirmed to Bar & Bench that she was being confined at home by her parents. She had penned a statement which she shared with Bar & Bench. It states,
“As per the Supreme Court judgement, I have the right to choose my life partner and also…to choose [the] occupation which I want to pursue. I don’t want to take further action against my parents, which can harm their reputation. I want justice and [to] avail my fundamental rights and if it will not be possible then yes, I’m ready to fight for my rights even against my parents. It’s a humble request…please help me out to get justice.”
Read today’s order:
HT to @HarshTriviality