SC/ST case against DMK MLA’s son, daughter-in-law | Madras HC directs the couple to appear in person before special court

Justice N. Anand Venkatesh directs the special court to consider the bail application of the accused only after issuing notice to the victim, a domestic aid, and giving an opportunity of hearing to her

January 25, 2024 02:20 pm | Updated 05:04 pm IST - CHENNAI

The 18-year-old girl Dalit girl speaks to mediapersons at a press meet organised by Evidence, an NGO in Madurai on January 19, 2024.

The 18-year-old girl Dalit girl speaks to mediapersons at a press meet organised by Evidence, an NGO in Madurai on January 19, 2024. | Photo Credit: G. Moorthy

The Madras High Court, on January 25, 2024 has refused to direct the Principal District and Sessions Court in Chennai to consider a bail application to be filed by DMK MLA E. Karunanithi’s son and daughter-in-law in a Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 case on the same day of their surrender.

To get today’s top stories from the State in your inbox, subscribe to our Tamil Nadu Today newsletter

Disposing of an application filed by Anto Mathivanan and his wife Marlena Ann, Justice N. Anand Venkatesh said, the usual direction issued by the court, to consider the bail application on the same day of surrender, could not be issued routinely in all cases in view of the amendments made to the SC/ST Act in 2016.

The judge, however, directed the accused couple to appear in person before the Principal District and Sessions Court, which was also the designated Special Court for SC/ST Act cases, within two weeks from the date of the receipt of a copy of his order on the application preferred by them.

On such appearance, the special court should order “reasonable, accurate and timely” notice as mandated under Section 15A(3) of the SC/ST Act to the victim (the couple’s former domestic aid) or her dependant through Registered Post with Acknowledged Due (RPAD) or through the Tiruvanmiyur police in Chennai.

After service of such notice, the special court should deal with the matter as expeditiously as possible on merits and in accordance with law, after hearing the victim or her dependant either in person or through her counsel or though a counsel to be appointed for her by the Legal Aid Services Authority, Justice Venkatesh said.

The charge against the two petitioners was that they had subjected their domestic help, belonging to a scheduled caste, to torture at their residence in Chennai.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.