The Madras High Court Bench here has directed the Director General of Police to instruct his subordinates not to facilitate publishing of photographs and other particulars of minor girls, who elope with their lovers, in newspapers.
A Division Bench comprising Justice P. Murgesen and Justice C.S. Karnan ordered the Additional Public Prosecutor to inform the DGP about the necessity to convey the message forthwith to all police stations in the State.
The judges said that publishing photographs and other details might spoil the future of the girls especially if they repent their mistake and express their desire to live with their parents after being produced before the court.
The observations were made while closing a couple of habeas corpus petitions filed by the fathers of two minor girls who were allegedly abducted by their lovers leading to registration of cases in a police station at Srirangam in Tiruchi district.
In one case, the girl told the court that she was actually abducted by her lover. Recording her submission, the judges handed over the girls to her father's custody and directed the police to proceed against the alleged abductor in accordance with law.
In the other case, the girl submitted that she had accompanied her lover on her own volition.
However, pointing out that she was only 17 years old and studying in Class XII, the judges advised her to go along with the parents and pursue her education.
Earlier, U. Nirmala Rani, counsel for one of the petitioners, told the court that many vernacular newspapers had carried the photographs of her client's daughter thereby causing much embarrassment and humiliation to the family.