New Delhi: In a reprieve for SPS Rathore, the Supreme Court on Thursday granted bail to the disgraced ex-DGP of Haryana who is behind bars for nearly six months serving a 18-month jail term in the Ruchika Girhotra molestation case.
The bail was given by a bench of Justices P Sathasivam and BS Chauhan, a day after the CBI filed a closure report in two of the three fresh cases registered against 68-year-old Rathore following allegations by the brother and the father of teenager Ruchika Girhotra. The case against Rathore relating to abetment to suicide of Ruchika is however still under probe.
The Court also directed that Rathore shall not leave the country without prior permission of the Chief Judicial Magistrate of Chandigarh.
Rathore had challenged before the apex court his conviction and the enhanced jail term from six months to 18 months.
Reacting to the court order, a disappointed SC Girhotra, father of Ruchika, said his family will now feel "insecure" since there will be a threat of "harassment" from Rathore.
In a setback to the Ruchika Girhotra family, the apex court granted bail against the backdrop of the closure reports by the CBI in the two fresh cases and the former top cop of Haryana having already served close to six months of his 18-month sentence.
The two cases related to the accusation against the top cop that he had doctored Ruchika`s post mortem report and that he was behind the custodial torture of her brother Ashu.
The closure reports were filed before the CBI court in Amabala which is yet to take a view. The CBI court has issued notices to the Girhotra family
Rathore`s plea against conviction is however pending in the Supreme Court.
Ruchika, 14, a budding tennis player, had committed suicide three years after being molested by Rathore on August 12, 1990. A sessions court had on May 25 this year enhanced Rathore`s jail term from six months to one-and-a-half years while allowing the plea of Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI) and the Girhotra family.
Rathore has been serving the 18-month jail term in Burail jail in Chandigarh since May 25 after his punishment was enhanced.
Punjab and Haryana High Court had on September 1 dismissed Rathore`s appeal challenging his conviction and the sentence, saying his conduct as a top official was "shameful.