Commissioner, Hisar division, Yudhvir Singh Khyalia has been facing day-to-day trial in a sexual harassment case of a retired woman pharmacist after the Supreme Court indicted him and reverted the case back to Panchkula district court.
The counsel for the woman, Prem Jagat, said the day-to-day hearing in the case is for trying Khyalia and others for molestation, house trespass, criminal intimidation and criminal conspiracy.
The incident dates back to the night of September 26, 1997. As per allegations of the victim, on the orders of the then Kalka SDM, Yudhvir Khyalia, then DSP Rajshri Singh along with police officials entered her official accommodation in Pinjore at night with video cameras. They acted on the complaint of Maya Rani, another colleague of the woman pharmacist, that she was having an illicit relationship with a person, who was present there.
Later, Khyalia along with the then Kalka tehsildar, Bir Singh, allegedly came there, as per the complaint. The woman was taken to the hospital where, she alleged, her medical examination was conducted by a male doctor.
Khyalia is now commissioner, Hisar division, and Rajshri Singh an IPS officer.
The woman pharmacist further alleged that the raid on her house had taken place a day before their evidence in a defamation case against Maya Rani.
She filed a complaint before a Panchkula court against Khyalia and Rajshri Singh along with 10 others for which they were summoned in 2001. The summon order was set aside by the additional district and sessions judge and upheld by the high court on the ground that the raid was carried out in official capacity and no prior prosecution sanction had been taken against Khyalia.
The woman pharmacist then appealed before the Supreme Court. A division bench of justice TS Thakur and justice Fakkir Mohamed Ibrahim Kalifulla not only indicted Khyalia for his conduct but also fined him for Rs 25,000, to be paid to the woman pharmacist by an order dated October 23 this year. The bench also directed for day-to-day trial, which has to be completed in three months.
“Assuming such an allegation (of illicit relationship) of Maya Rani was true on its face value, we wonder, how a person in the rank of an SDM took a decision to barge into the house of a lady, that too at the odd hours of 10pm accompanied by a posse of police officers under the guise of ascertaining the truthfulness or otherwise of such a complaint and for that purpose engage the services of two cameramen also with video cameras,” said justice Kalifulla.
The judgment also pointed that such a complaint could only be filed by husband of the woman pharmacist or wife of the person with whom the relationship was alleged.
Justice Thakur added, “The alleged acts of the respondent (Khyalia) cannot, therefore, be said to in discharge of his official duties or in the purported discharge of such duties.
Public functionaries cannot, under the cloak of purported discharge of official duties, resort to harassment and humiliation of citizens on the pretext of a complaint having been received by them, especially when the same does not disclose the commission of any offence triable by the executive magistrate or cognisable by the police…”