VED PRAKASH YADAV Vs. STATE
Court:Delhi High Court
Bench: JUSTICE R.C. Chopra
VED PRAKASH YADAV Vs. STATE On 30 September 2005
Travesty of justice if two old and aged petitioners viz. father-in-law and mother-in-law made to languish in jail inspite of circumstances on record to suggest their innocence and not connected with offence. Good and sufficient grounds for release of petitioner father-in-law on regular bail and petitioner-mother-in-law on anticipatory bail.
This order shall dispose of the Bail Application No. 2055/2005 for regular bail by the father-in-law of the deceased Poonam and Bail Application No. 2272/2005 for anticipatory bail by the mother-in-law arising out of FIR No. 479/2005 registered at PS Prashant Vihar under Sections 304-B/498-A/34 IPC.
2. The facts relevant for the disposal of these two applications, briefly stated, are that the petitioner, Ved Prakash, is the father-in-law of deceased Poonam, who was married to Sunil Kumar on 27.4.2003 at Delhi. Petitioner, Omwati, is her mother-in-law. According to the prosecution, sufficient dowry was given in her marriage and a sum of Rs. 3,60,000/- in cash was also given for a Santro Car. It is alleged that soon after marriage, the in-laws of Poonam including the petitioners started harassing and torturing her for more dowry. It was specifically stated in the FIR that Poonam’s husband Sunil, his father, mother, elder brother Satish and his wife Sharmila were torturing Poonam on account of dowry demands. Her brother-in-law Sandeep and sister-in-law, however, were not party to these demands and as such, there was no grievance against them. It was alleged that the husband of Poonam used to beat her also and as such, a report was lodged at Police Station Saraswati Vihar. One flat was purchased in the name of the deceased at Rohini for which also, the family of Poonam was made to give Rs. 4 lac to Ved Prakash, petitioner. On 22.5.2005, Poonam, committed suicide in her matrimonial home and as such, an FIR under Section 498-A/304-B, IPC was registered. Sunil Kumar Yadav, husband of the deceased, who was an Inspector in Delhi Police and the present petitioner were arrested. The Bail Application No. 2055/2005 is for regular bail on behalf of the father-in-law Ved Prakash Yadav and Bail Application No. 2272/2005 is for anticipatory bail on behalf of mother-in-law, Omwati.
3. Learned Counsel for the petitioners has argued that deceased Poonam and her husband Sunil were living separately in their flat at Sector-15, Rohini at the time of the incident and even prior to that, they were living in a rented house at Sector-16, Rohini and as such, both the petitioners had not played any role in the events leading to the suicide of the deceased. It is submitted that the petitioner Ved Prakash Yadav had even disinherited his son Sunil from his property much before the incident and had no dealings with him. He used to persuade his son to behave properly with the deceased and was doing everything possible to ensure that the couple was peacefully settled. He refers to the statements made by the deceased and her brother before the Special Executive Magistrate (SEM) on 10.4.2004 in 107/151 Cr.PC proceedings in which they made allegations of harassment and dowry demands only against Sunil Yadav. It was also stated by the brother of the deceased that the petitioner, Ved Prakash, had tried to impress upon Sunil Yadav to behave properly but he did not agree. It is argued that if right from the day of marriage these petitioners also had been harassing the deceased and making dowry demands, the statements before the SEM would have contained allegations against them also and there was no reason for the deceased and her brother to make allegations against the husband Sunil Yadav only and make no allegations against the present petitioners. It is submitted that the allegations In F.I.R. against the petitioners are false and merely a reaction to the unfortunate suicide of deceased Poonam Yadav. It is submitted that under the facts and circumstances of the case, there are good grounds for releasing the petitioner Ved Prakash Yadav on regular bail and granting anticipatory bail to petitioner, Omwati.
4. Learned Counsel for the complainant and learned Counsel for the State, on the other hand, have vehemently opposed the prayer of the petitioners on the ground that the FIR clearly discloses that even before marriage dowry demands were being raised by the petitioners and their family and Rs. 3,60,000 were given to them for purchasing a Santro Car. It is submitted that for purchasing a flat at Sector-15 Rohini also, the family of the deceased was made to pay a sum of Rs. 4 lac and for this reason only, original documents are still with the brother of the deceased which suggests that the payment was made by them. It is also pointed out that the petitioner, Omwati had obtained regular bail upon mis-representations which was later cancelled by the Court and as such, the petitioners are not entitled to bail as prayed.
5. It is true that in the FIR, serious allegations of dowry demands and dowry related harassment have been made against both the petitioner but at this stage, this Court must see as to whether prima facie, there is any circumstance on record to indicate that the allegations contained in the F.I.R. are false. One circumstance which strongly goes against the allegations against the two petitioners is that about an year before the death of deceased Poonam, there were 107/151 Cr.PC proceedings before the Special Executive Magistrate against the petitioners’ son Sunil in which statements were recorded not only by the Police but by the SEM also. Copies of these statements have been placed on record. In these statements, there was no allegation at all in regard to the dowry demands or dowry related harassment against the present petitioners. The allegations were against the husband Sunil Kumar Yadav only. In the statement of brother of the deceased, it had come that petitioner Ved Prakash Yadav had even tried to persuade his son to behave properly but he did not agree. The disinheritance of his son by petitioner Ved Prakash Yadav prior to the incident in question indicates that the petitioners were not having any control over their son regarding his conduct towards his wife and as such he was disinherited and was also made to live with his wife in a separate house in Rohini. These facts and circumstances satisfactorily indicate that the allegations of dowry demands and harassment now being made against the petitioner are not true.
6. At this stage, therefore, the possibility of a false case against these two petitioners cannot be overruled. It would be a travesty of justice if two old and aged petitioners are made to languish in jail in spite of the fact that there are circumstances on record to suggest that they are innocent and not connected with the offence. As such, this Court is of the considered view that there are good and sufficient grounds for release of petitioner Ved Prakash Yadav on regular bail and petitioner Omwati on anticipatory bail.
7. Accordingly, the Bail Application No. 2055/2005 filed by Ved Prakash Yadav is allowed and he is ordered to be released on bail upon his executing a personal bond in the sum of Rs. 25,000 with one surety in the like amount to the satisfaction of the Court concerned.
8. Bail Application No. 2272/2005 is also allowed and it is ordered that the petitioner Omwati, in the event of her arrest, shall be released on bail upon her executing a personal bond in the sum of Rs. 25,000 with one surety in the like amount to the satisfaction of the Arresting Officer. She shall, however, join investigations as and when required.
9. This anticipatory bail of the petitioner Omwati shall enure till the filing of the challan after which, she will apply for regular bail under Section 437 Cr.PC in accordance with law.
10. Nothing stated herein shall be taken as an expression of opinion on the merits of the case as the observations made herein are tentative only.
Bail application allowed.