Delhi court on Tuesday released former Delhi High Court Bar Association chairman Rajiv Khosla on Tuesday, recently convicted of assaulting a lawyer, namely Sujata Kohli, in 1994, by imposing a fine of Rs. 40,000 on him.
Complainant Sujata Kohli, who was previously a practicing lawyer, became a judge in the Delhi court system and retired as a district and session judge.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Gajender Singh Nagar issued the sentencing order in the following terms:
– For the commission of a punishable offense u / s 323 IPC, this Court is of the opinion, having regard to the circumstances of the case, including the nature of the offense, ie. simple injury and the fact that the convict is an elderly person has never been convicted in any other case. The undersigned found it opportune that he be released after due warning. The convicted person is further required to pay a total compensation of Rs. 20,000 / – of which Rs. 10,000 – to be paid to the complainant victim and Rs. 10,000 – to be paid to the State for the costs of the proceedings. In default of payment of Rs. 20,000 / – convicted person must face a simple jail term for a period of 30 days.
– For the commission of a punishable offense u / s 506 IPC Convict is ordered to pay a fine of Rs. 20,000 / – of which Rs. 10,000 – to be paid to the complaining victim and Rs. 10,000 – to be paid to the state for the costs of the proceedings.. In default of payment of Rs. 20,000 / – convicted person must face a simple jail term for a period of 30 days.
The Court added that the said fine must be paid within a period of one month which must be returned to the complainant as and when she appears.
In making the sentencing order, although the Court took note that Khosla, despite being a member of the bar and a judicial officer, assaulted a female member of the bar in the presence of a number of lawyers, which was certainly an aggravating factor.The fact that he was a 65-year-old man, who has never been convicted in any other case to date according to the police record.
“Thus, the condemned man aged about 65 has for the first time being convicted of an offense he committed 27 years ago, this is a mitigating factor to consider when deciding the sentence. Under these circumstances, the undersigned did not see fit to send the convict to prison as he is not convicted in any other case, in his entire life of 65 years, and he is an elderly person,“added the judge.
Sentencing debates began in the case on November 15.
About the controversy
The allegations against Khosla were that in July 1994, when he was secretary of the Delhi Bar Association, he asked Kohli to attend a seminar and, when he refused, threatened her that all facilities of the Bar Association would be withdrawn and that it would be dispossessed of its seat as well.
A civil suit was brought by her seeking an appropriate injunction, but her table and chair were removed from their places. She then alleged in the complaint that when she was sitting on a bench placed near her seat while awaiting the visit of the civilian judge, Rajiv Khosla and his co-defendants came with a crowd of 40 to 50 lawyers.
According to the complainant, they all surrounded her, and Khosla walked over and pulled her out of her hair, twisted her arms, dragged her by the hair, cursed and threatened her. .
While the FIR was filed by the police in August 1994, the complainant filed a complaint of total dissatisfaction with the investigation in March 1995.
The court was of the view that Kohli’s testimony as an allegation of being pulled by the hair and arm by Khosla and the threat that she would not be allowed to practice from the Tis Hazari court was “absolutely true. and worthy of faith ”.
“The Delhi Bar Association is undoubtedly a very strong and formidable body of lawyers and more often than not the police are very slow to take action when it comes to lawyers. the accused was a prominent leader of the bar, at the material time he was honorary secretary of the DBA, ”the court said on the aspect of police witnesses not supporting the complainant’s case.
The court was of the opinion that pulling someone out by the hair and arm would result in bodily pain and therefore an offense under Section 323 (willfully causing injury) IPC was established as bodily pain inflicted on the complainant.
The Court thus observed:
“It is common knowledge that people these days are becoming self-centered and finding it safe to keep mom even though they see an injustice done to anyone. It is becoming a harsh reality these days. . Nowadays, no one comes forward to save someone or testify for someone unless and until one has a personal interest in the case. “
“The complainant was a lawyer, she was aware of all the legal provisions, if she had had to make up a story, she could easily have made up a story that, late at night, she was assaulted or assaulted by the accused , which is not the case. the case here. In the present case, the complainant alleged the attack in the light of day in the presence of a number of lawyers, shortly before the visit of Civil Judge Ld. It is impossible for a person to make up a story as thoroughly as is claimed by the complainant.
Title: Sujata Kohli c. Rajiv Khosla & Ors.