New Delhi: A man has been denied interim custody of his 10-year-old daughter by a Delhi court which said it will not be appropriate as his family members are accused of molesting and murdering his wife.
The court noted that the man and his family members are accused of harassing and murdering his wife and the in-laws are also facing prosecution for allegedly molesting her.
"Thus it is clear that the conduct of the family members of the petitioner (man) is suspicious and the said cases would be disposed of by the court of competent jurisdiction, but, from the perusal of the said FIRs, it is prima facie clear that the man has failed to protect his wife from the hands of his family members.
"In the given circumstances, this court is of the firm view that the child who is about 10-year-old and being female child and in view of the facts mentioned in the FIRs, it will not be appropriate for this court to grant interim custody of the child to the man," Additional District Judge Pawan Kumar Matto said.
The man, a resident of east Delhi, had approached the court seeking to hand over the custody of his daughter, who is living with her maternal grandparents after her mother`s death, twice in a month.
The court said that granting the girl`s interim custody to her father might prove "hazardous" for her and the paramount consideration is the welfare of the child.
The judge said when he had talked to the child in his chamber, she had "straightaway denied to meet" her father.
The girl had also told the judge that his maternal grandparents, uncle and aunt were taking good care of her and she was studying in a reputed school.
The man, in his plea, had alleged that the girl`s maternal grandparents were not taking proper care of her and he, being the father of the child, has the right to take her custody.
The maternal grandparents, however, had told the judge that the man has concealed important facts from the court and harassment and molestation cases were lodged against them.
They had also said their daughter`s burnt body was found in her matrimonial house and her in-laws had murdered her.
Opposing the man`s plea, they said in case the child`s custody is handed over to her father, there are chances that her future may be ruined.
The court dismissed the man`s application, saying it was devoid of any merit.
It refused to give visitation rights to the man to meet his daughter, saying the girl does not have any sentimental attachment with him and it will not be fair to force her to meet him.