Allahabad High Court: In an alleged sexual assault case, Samit Gopal, J., noted that allegations of sexual assault were against a practicing lawyer by a junior in his office.
Instant bail application was filed by the applicant seeking enlargement on bail during the trial in connection with a case under Sections 366, 376, 354-A, 328, 323, 504, 506 of Penal Code, 1860.
An FIR was lodged under Section 366 IPC against the applicant and Sipahi Lal Shukla in connection with an incident, wherein it was alleged that the first informant’s daughter aged about 20 years who was an LL.B student and was practising in the High Court with the present applicant who was an Advocate in the High Court.
It was stated that on the day of occurrence from near Alia Law Agency, both the accused persons enticed away his daughter.
Analysis and Decision
It was evident that the applicant was named in the FIR, in the statements of the prosecutrix recorded under Sections 161 and 164 CrPC.
The name of the applicant and the role assigned to him was consistent throughout. The allegations were of sexual assault and physical assault upon the prosecutrix which had continued for a substantial long period.
Further, it was stated that the prosecutrix was junior in the office of the applicant and allegations were against a person practicing law and was a person in uniform involved in the noble profession.
“The office of a lawyer is not less respected than Courts of law.”
The act as complained of by the prosecutrix against the applicant was told by her in detail in her statements recorded under Sections 161 and 164 CrPC.
Bench also stated that,
The investigation for other accused persons is pending and the apprehension of learned counsels for the State and of the panel lawyer of High Court Legal Service Committee of the applicant being in a position to influence the investigation and tamper with the evidence cannot be ruled out at this stage.
In view of the facts and circumstances of the case, the bail application was rejected.
Lastly, the High Court vide an order directed the District and Sessions Judge, Prayagraj to send the statement of the prosecutrix recorded under Section 164 CrPC from the Court concerned.
The compliance of the order had been done and a sealed envelope was received, and it was opened on the directions of the Court during the arguments and after the conclusion, the Court directed the Bench Secretary of this Court to seal the same. The Registrar General was directed to remit back the sealed envelope to the District and Sessions Judge, Prayagraj. [Rajkaran Patel v. State of U.P., Criminal Misc. Bail Application No. 48511 of 2021, decided on 26-5-2022]
Advocates before the Court:
Counsel for Applicant:- Rajiv Lochan Shukla, Ravikant Shukla
Counsel for Opposite Party:- G.A., Sukhvir Singh