No interim relief, notice to CBI on Rathore’s bail plea

Justice Sabina of the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday issued notice to the CBI on two petitions seeking anticipatory bail in separate cases registered by the agency against the petitioner, former Haryana DGP SPS Rathore.

Notice was also issued to the CBI on another petition filed by Rathore seeking quashing of the case of abetment to suicide by molestation victim Ruchika registered against him.

Rathore had filed these petitions through his counsel-wife Abha Rathore following FIRs registered by the Panchkula police. However, as the High Court was informed that investigation in the cases had been transferred to the CBI, which has already registered cases in the matter, the notices were issued to the Central investigative agency.

As the bail plea came up for hearing on Tuesday morning, Abha told the court she wanted to argue the case in detail, at which the court posted the case for the afternoon.

As Abha started the arguments in the afternoon, Haryana Advocate General Hawa Singh Hooda told the court of the latest developments – that the Haryana police had handed over the case file to the CBI, which had registered fresh cases.

CBI counsel Anmol Rattan Sidhu, who was also present in the court, sought a week’s time to give a reply on the petitions, as the agency had lodged the fresh cases only on Monday.

During the arguments in the court, when CBI counsel Anmol Rattan Sidhu was asked to argue on the basis of the FIRs – in which the Girhotra family has alleged Rathore unleashed a reign of terror on them – he stated there was a need to argue the case in detail. However, Abha Rathore said it was Rathore and his family that was under a “reign of terror of the media” since December 21, when he was convicted by a lower court.