In a last-ditch effort to prevent her client and husband, S.P.S. Rathore, from going to jail, Abha told a local Chandigarh court on Tuesday that the former Haryana DGP’s health was critical.
“Send him to PGI instead of Jail,” she pleaded soon after the sessions court dismissed Rathore’s appeal challenging his conviction, and enhanced his sentence from six to 18 months for molesting teenager Ruchika Girhotra in 1990.
PGI or the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research is Chandigarh’s premier governmental medical hospital and college.
Rathore’s counsel Abha even attached a few medical reports and a letter of appointment with doctors along with her application to the court. The CBI objected to this.
“The jail has its own doctor who would examine Rathore,” the agency’s counsel said. “Follow the advice of the jail doctor instead of relying on these documents, which could be a tactic to avoid arrest.”
An agitated Abha retorted, “What if he suffers a heart attack in jail? You do not know how critical his health is. He has undergone surgeries and thus needs immediate medical attention.”
The court, however, directed that Rathore be taken to the local Burail Jail immediately.
Soon after being lodged in jail, Rathore underwent a medical examination, results of which were reportedly normal.
“All the medical parameters, including ECG, were found to be normal,” jail sources said.
While being led out of court, Rathore continued to be defiant. “Nehru is my role model and he always inspired (me) to smile in adversity … so I’ll even smile more,” he told reporters.
Before he was taken in custody, Rathore’s tie, gold chain, watch and belt were handed over to Abha.
Rathore was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment on December 21 by a CBI special court for molesting Ruchika in Panchkula on August 12, 1990.
Three years later, Ruchika committed suicide. The quantum of sentence had sparked an outrage in the country.
(with inputs from PTI)