New Delhi: A doctor couple, who had gone on a
vacation to Thailand, allegedly leaving their 13-year-old maid
locked-up and starving in their flat at Dwarka in South West
Delhi, was on Tuesday denied anticipatory bail by a court here.
"Anticipatory bail plea dismissed," Additional District
Judge I S Mehta said, declining the relief to Dr Sanjay Verma
and his wife Sumita, against whom look-out notices were issued
on April 2 by the Delhi Police.
The anticipatory bail plea made on behalf of the couple,
wanted by the police for allegedly employing a child below 14
years of age and exploiting her, contended that the section 26
(exploitation of juvenile or child employee) of the Juvenile
Justice Act, 2000, is not applicable to them.
Appearing for the doctor couple, their counsel told the
court that his clients were to return to India on March 31.
Counsel AK Singh for a child rights civil society, Shakti
Vahini, which was first informed about the underage domestic
aide`s plight and which took up the matter with police, sought
to refute the missing doctor couple`s submission.
Singh said the doctor couple has already arrived here. He
sided with the prosecution counsel in opposing the couple`s
anticipatory bail plea saying the couple had locked up the
minor maid inside their Dwarka flat and left for Bangkok with
their daughter on March 25.
He said the girl could be rescued five days later on March
30 only after neighbours saw her crying in the flat`s balcony.
The girl, who hails from Jharkhand, was taken to the DDU
Hospital where doctors said she was on verge of starvation.
The doctor couple had left for Thailand after locking her
up and leaving food and water that lasted only for two days,
the police had alleged.
The police had lodged an FIR against them under the
Juvenile Justice Act, Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act,
Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act and section 323
(punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) of IPC.
The girl had also complained to Child Welfare Committee
that she was beaten up by the couple for mistakes and was not
paid for her services.