Recently, the Bombay High Court’s Aurangabad bench directed the Aurangabad police commissioner to ensure the sensitization of an assistant commissioner of Police (ACP) in regards to crimes against women before he is assigned duty to probe such cases in the future.
The Court’s order came after the observation that the officer in question was found deviating from said duties under the influence of the accused politician. The officer harassed the survivor instead of taking any appropriate action against him.
The Division Bench passed an order on the plea filed by the victim seeking directions to ACP Nishikant Bhujbal to arrest the accused who is a member of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) according to the FIR the survivor had lodged previously.
The Division bench comprised of Justice Ravindra Ghuge and Justice Bhalchandra U Debadwar.
Senior Advocate Rajendra Deshmukh for the victim has said that the politician sexually assaulted the victim and even though the victim was threatened with murder by the accused, a delayed FIR was filled.
Subsequently, Bhujbal was appointed as the Investigating Officer.
Deshmukh stated that Bhujbal would not put the accused under custody as the latter was a high-profile politician. He said, “It is the victim, who was consistently summoned for investigation/interrogation and harassed. The accused is roaming free.”
Chief Public Prosecutor D R Kale has opposed the plea because the closure report was filed after due investigation and as the accused is a politician, there is a possibility of his implication to destroy his political career cannot be ruled out.
The Bench said,“We do not find a single convincing reason as to why the IO while conducting an investigation into a heinous offense punishable under Section 376 of the IPC, refrained from arresting the accused.”
The Court remarked, “This shows, either his (IO) insensitivity to the offenses committed against women, or he was manipulated by the accused…we have every reason to be astonished by this conduct of the IO,”
The Court reprimanded the Aurangabad CP, “Bhujbal needs to undergo a sensitization course/program on crimes against women before he could be entrusted with the responsibility of investigating crimes against women,”