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Ruchika case proceedings to be heard in-camera

By Super Admin

Chandigarh, Feb 8 (ANI): The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Monday agreed to hold in-camera proceedings in the Ruchika Girhotra molestation case that involves former Haryana Director General of Police (DGP) SPS Rathore.

No media personnel will be allowed during the trial.

The decision of the court comes after an application moved today by Rathore's wife Abha Rathore in which she pressed for the hearings to be conducted in-camera.

In her application to the court, Abha Rathore has mentioned that her husband and client SPS Rathore has over the period gone through a lot of harassment from the press, which is affecting his mental state.

The court was to hear Rathore's bail plea today against the six-months sentence and conviction in the Ruchika Girhotra molestation case.

The CBI had on Thursday filed an appeal in the district and sessions court for enhancing the sentence of Rathore.

In the appeal, the CBI has questioned the leniency shown to Rathore and the short sentence given to him, which had allowed him to get bail immediately after the orders were pronounced.

As per provisions of law, the maximum punishment for molestation under Section 354 is a jail term of two years.

The High Court had on January 18 extended the two anticipatory bail applications and a petition demanding cancellation of abetment to suicide charges against Rathore till January 25.

The High Court had earlier on January 12 rejected the interim bail plea of Rathore, and asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file its reply in this case by January 18.

The former cop has been charged for allegedly molesting 14-year old teenager Ruchika Girhotra, a budding young tennis star in 1990s.

Rathore has three cases pending against him in the court; all filed by Ruchika's family and friends.

Ruchika's family lawyer Pankaj Bharadwaj had earlier filed two FIRs against Rathore.

The lawyer had claimed that the first FIR was filed for forging documents like the inquest report and the other for illegal detention of Ruchika's brother, Ashu, who was kept in illegal detention at the behest of Rathore and given tortures.

The third case is that of abetment to suicide against him. The family has claimed that Ruchika was expelled from Sacred Heart Convent in Chandigarh due to Rathore's influence.

Teenager Ruchika had killed herself three years after the incident by drinking poison.

The Special CBI court had earlier held the former cop guilty under Section 354 IPC and sentenced him to six months imprisonment and had imposed a fine of Rs 1,000 on him. (ANI)

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