In a setback to veteran Congress leader ND Tiwari, the Delhi high court on Friday said he can be compelled to give blood sample for DNA test in a paternity suit filed by a man claiming to be his biological son.
Taking serious note of the former Andhra Pradesh governor's repeated non-compliance of earlier orders to provide samples, a two-judge bench headed by acting Chief Justice AK Sikri said the single judge still hearing the matter could take the help of the police to get the order implemented.
Tiwari's lawyer said the order will be challenged before the Supreme Court.
"Upon Tiwari continuing to defy the order, the single judge shall be entitled to take police assistance and use of reasonable force for compliance thereof," ruled the court.
Rohit Shekhar, 32, claiming to be Tiwari's biological son had challenged the September 28, 2011 order of the single judge that 86-year-old Tiwari cannot be compelled to give the sample on the ground that such an act would be an unwarranted intrusion on his rights under article 21 (right to life).
Allowing Shekhar's plea, the bench also disagreed with the single judge that the court can draw adverse inference if Tiwari refused to give his blood sample, saying, "Adverse inference from non-compliance cannot be a substitute to the enforceability of a direction for DNA testing."
Shekhar argued that the single judge had failed to deal with Tiwari's "dismissive conduct" against its previous order to give blood sample to decide the paternity suit. This order had come on Tiwari's plea challenging the December 23, 2010 order of the high court, which had asked him to give his blood sample for DNA test.