The Delhi High Court has sought the city police's response on a woman's plea seeking direction to lodge an FIR against animal rights activist Maneka Gandhi and her sister for "illegally" taking away animals from a shelter home and threatening her.
Issuing a notice to police, Justice Kailash Gambhir sought their replies by October 21 on Nisha Sharma's plea alleging police's failure in lodging a case against Gandhi, founder member of Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre (SGACC), and also her sister Ambika Shukla, its director, under various sections of IPC for threatening her and also under the Prevention of Cr­uelty against Animals Act for fo­rcefully taking away the animals.
The court also asked the police to file a status report on Sharma's claim that Shukla on March 28, 2012 had forcefully taken away some animals, including those given to her by one Sheila Devall, from her shelter home "without any legal sanction and authority" in police presence.
The petition, filed through advocate Nikita Sharma and Atul Nagarajan, challenged the magistrate as well as the session judge's order dismissing the plea and said "respondents (Gandhi and Shukla) are private people having a NGO and they have no authority under any provision of law to take away the animals forcefully from the possession of anyone".
"Animal board is the only authority having such powers and no private individual. No notice or intimation was given to the petitioner," the plea said.
According to Sharma, British national Devall had given her animals for care in the shelter home as she was leaving for Mumbai.