Observing that he had already suffered humiliation,the Bombay High Court has granted anticipatory bail to a bank officer who was accused of molesting a teenaged girl in the lift of his building.
The bail was granted yesterday by Justice Sadhana Jadhav,who accepted the arguments of Joginder Singh,Assistant General Manager in Oriental Bank of Commerce,that his custodial interrogation was not required.
We are not talking about absolving him. He is already humiliated. He holds a high post. There is more humiliation in workplace in such cases,” the Judge said and asked whether custodial interrogation would be necessary.
Singh was facing allegations of molesting a 16-year-old girl,his neighbour,in the lift of his residential building in suburban Vile Parle on February 17. The girl alleged in a police complaint that Singh entered the lift which was operated by a liftman and touched her inappropriately.
While granting bail,the Court asked Singh to furnish PR Bond of Rs 25,000 with solvent surety in the same amount. The Court also asked him to report to investigating officer every Sunday till the charge sheet is filed.
Singh’s lawyers Abad Ponda and Dinesh Tiwari urged for expediting the trial. However,the court noted that the probe was still on and the charge sheet had not been filed. The accused was given liberty to approach the court for expediting
trial after filing of the charge sheet.
Urging for bail,the defence lawyers argued that the applicant has cooperated with the investigating agency. The counsel representing the victim said the heinousness of the offence does not entitle the applicant to grant of pre-arrest bail as it is in fact a deterrent factor.
However,Singh’s lawyers submitted that registration of the offence against the applicant had exposed him to social obloquy and that he had been humiliated in the society as well as at the work place. For a person who claimed to be dignified and a person with high profile,the very registration of an offence is a sufficiently deterrent factor,they said.
The lawyers submitted that in these circumstances,the custodial interrogation of the applicant would not be necessary.