Delhi HC re-unites couple ahead of V-day

New Delhi, Feb 13 (IANS) The Delhi High Court has re-united a 27-year-old man with his wife and child, almost a year after he was put under trial for kidnapping and raping her.

Ankit Kumar and the girl solemnised their marriage on February 18 last year, following which an objection was raised by the girl’s father.

The man was arrested on May 10, 2019 after the father claimed that his daughter was less than 18 years of age at the time of marriage and was kidnapped.

After the arrest, the wife was sent to shelter home ‘Nirmala Chayya’ and was residing there since then.

Kumar, a Delhi resident, was tried under section 363 (kidnapping), 366 (inducing woman to compel her marriage) and 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code and other sections of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO). He was, however, acquitted of all the charges on December 11, 2019.

His wife, in the meantime, gave birth to their daughter at the women’s shelter home here.

Kumar then moved a habeas corpus petition before the High Court urging that his wife and daughter be produced before the court and sought permission to take them home.

He also contended that he has “not even seen his child, forget about caressing her”.

A Bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and I.S. Mehta on Wednesday asked the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) to decide on Kumar’s plea within five working days and allowed him to meet his wife and four-month-old daughter during reasonable hours at shelter home.

“In the meantime, Superintendent, Nirmal Chhaya Complex, where the mother-daughter are currently lodged, is directed to permit the petitioner, Ankit Kumar, to interact with them at all reasonable hours, in accordance with law and the rules,” the Bench said.