HC grants anticipatory bail to doctor in rape case in Mumbai

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - 20:59

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Tuesday granted anticipatory bail to a city-based doctor accused of raping his 27-year-old patient.

Justice R S Dalvi, while granting bail to Dr Rustom Soonawala on a surety of Rs one lakh, observed that his custodial interrogation was not required.

The court, however, permitted the police to take the accused doctor in custody for a day to conduct medical tests on him and collect blood and DNA samples.

If the tests are to be conducted outside Mumbai, then Soonawala will be in police custody for a day and if in Mumbai, then for 12 hours, the court directed.

Soonawala (44) had approached the High Court two weeks back after the sessions court rejected his application in which he had stated that he was ready to give his blood and semen samples provided he was not arrested at the hospital.

Advocate Aabad Ponda, appearing for Soonawala argued that under section 53 (A) of the Criminal Procedure Code, a rape accused has the right to submit himself to the police for medical examinations.

"The police can wait to arrest me till the reports of the medical tests are out. The commission of the offence of rape will be established if the medical tests are positive with the tests conducted on the victim. Only an innocent man will agree to undergo such tests in a rape case," Ponda argued.

Prosecutor Purnima Kantharia opposed the petition and said his custody was required as he was influential and could tamper with the medical tests.

Justice Dalvi was not satisfied with the prosecution arguments and granted the doctor anticipatory bail.

Soonawala is accused of raping his patient, suffering from tuberculosis, on May 17 under the pretext of examining her while her husband and his receptionist were waiting outside the examination room.


First Published: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - 20:59

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