In a major blow to former minister Raghunath Mohanty, the Orissa High Court on Wednesday rejected his plea for quashing the FIR lodged against him and his family members including son Rajashree by his daughter-in-law Barsa Swony Choudhury.
The single judge bench of Justice Raghubir Das observed that since prima facie ingredients of the offences alleged were available in the FIR, it was not inclined to entertain the petition. The court had concluded hearing on the petition on Tuesday.
Raghunath, his wife Pritilata, daughter Rupashree and son-in-law Subhendu Kumar Madhuala had filed the petition seeking quashing of the FIR lodged against them and son Rajashree by Barsa alleging dowry torture. Rajashree has been arrested by the Human Rights Protection Cell (HRPC) of State police and kept in judicial custody.
While moving the petition, the counsel appearing for Mohanty had submitted that the former minister and his wife used to reside at Bhubaneswar away from the daughter-in-law. His daughter and son-in-law also resided in another place. Therefore, the allegations made in the FIR were false and baseless.
Indicating other circumstances and the law on the issue, they had appealed to the court to quash the FIR. They had also appealed to the court to pass interim order directing the police not to take any coercive action against them, which was also rejected along with the main plea.
The Government advocate had argued that as the petitioners had also filed an application seeking anticipatory bail in the Court, there was no need to pass any interim order in this case.