Handwara girl, her family free to go anywhere: HC

Handwara girl, her family free to go anywhere: HC

Terms parents’ contention of her illegal detention as ‘unjustified’; rejects plea for FIR against SP, SHO

Srinagar: A day after parents of the Handwara girl attested that neither they nor their daughter required any police protection, the J&K high court on Thursday ruled that the entire family was free to go wherever they wanted.
However, a division bench of Justices Mohammad Yaqoob Mir and Ali Mohammad Magrey rejected claims of the girl’s mother that her daughter, husband and sister were “illegally detained” for 27 days, observing that such contention was “unjustified and uncalled for”.
“The petitioner (the girl’s mother) and her husband feel that there is no threat perception to them as well as to the girl, as is clear from their applications and affidavit. (Father of the girl) who had sought protection, and (the girl’s) mother have stated that they want to move freely. It being so, they along with their daughter and her aunt shall be free to go where ever they want,” the court said, three days after reserving the judgment on the plea by the girl’s mother, seeking directions to Director General of Police to file an FIR against Handwara SP and the SHO Handwara police station for “illegal arrest” of the girl.
“(SP and SHO Handwara) have made it clear that they had never detained (girl, her father and aunt), instead it was at the request of the (girl’s father) that they were kept in protected place of their choice. When it is so, there is no question of illegal detention or illegal confinement, as a result whereof, there can’t be any cause for directing registration of case against (the SP or the SHO),” the court said.
The division bench also declined the demand of the girl’s mother for investigation into the role of army, particularly GoC 15 Corps Badami Bagh, in “creation and release of the video” featuring the girl giving a clean chit to the soldiers for the molestation attempt on April 12 last.
The court said the girl’s father had filed an application before Chief Judicial Magistrate Handwara, requesting for withdrawing the protection of the applicant and his family, stating they do not require any police custody or protection and they want to move freely and without any hesitation.
The Magistrate had called a report from the SHO which division bench found was suggestive of the fact that the girl faces life threat.
Accordingly, the CJM in its order on April 29 dismissed the application, observing that plea by girl’s mother was pending before the High court.
The state government had stated that no constitutional, fundamental or legal rights of the girl or her father were infringed or violated.
“That the (girl’s mother) has not approached with clean hands, she has misrepresented the facts and also concealed material facts from this Court. It is submitted that (her) husband and the daughter were provided protective custody and security in view of apprehending grave and imminent to threat to their lives,” the government had said in reply to the court’s direction.