The police got an earful from the Bombay High Court on Monday after failing to trace a woman who went missing about four months ago.
A division bench of Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice U.D. Salvi has asked the assistant commissioner of police to guide officers from the Bhandup police station in tracing Sini Shaju (30) who did not return home after she left from work on May 5.
The court order came after the additional public prosecutor, F.R. Shaikh told the court that the police sub inspector, who is investigating the case, has done everything possible, but the woman remains untraceable.
Shaikh also informed the court that Sini had withdrawn cash and jewellery from her bank account on the day she disappeared. “She must have left on her own,’ said Shaikh.
Justice Khanwilkar said, “Even if she went on her own, you (police) should be able to trace her. Either find her or we will have to tell the parents that the state is helpless and can’t find your daughter.”
The court has asked the police sub inspector to take instructions from his seniors on how to further investigate the case and inform the court about it by September 1.
Sini Shaju’s parents, K.S. Narayanan and Sarojini Narayanan, had filed a habeas corpus (produce person in court) petition in the court early this month when the police could not trace their daughter.
Ashish Mehta, their advocate, argued that whenever the parents go to the police station, the police abuse them with filthy language.
Justice Khanwilkar asked: “Is this how you (police) treat complainants? A friendly approach at the police station level has to be maintained.”
Sini Shaju married Shaju Pullaniparambil in 2004 and they have two children.
Mehta argued that after marriage Shaju was harassing Sini. Nearly one and half years ago, he left the house and settled in Pune. However, three days before Sini disappeared, he came back to the city. The parents suspect that their daughter may have been killed, said Mehta.