TERI Director-General RK Pachauri, who is facing sexual harassment allegations from a woman employee, was on Saturday granted anticipatory bail by a Delhi court which rejected the request of police for his custody.
While extending the relief, the court said it was on a condition that he will join the investigation as and when called and also follow previous directions like not entering the TERI office premises.
During the hearing, Delhi police which moved an application seeking recall of court’s order granting protection from arrest to Pachauri, alleged that he is misusing the liberty granted to him and influencing the witnesses.“Arguments heard from all the parties. There is no substance in the plea of prosecution for recall of earlier order to grant interim protection to the accused. Anticipatory bail is granted to the accused with a condition that he will join the investigation as and when called by the Investigating Officer (IO) of the case,” Additional Sessions Judge Raj Kumar Tripathi said.
Additional public prosecutor M Zafar Khan said that when statements of an assistant to Pachauri was recorded it was disclosed that he has met him in hospital and had dictated a version to be given to police.
Public prosecutor also alleged that he is not joining the investigation and under his influence even TERI officials are not cooperating with the police.
“We need his custodial interrogation to corroborate the evidence and to stop him from influencing the witnesses,” Khan said.
He also added that two officials who came to Lodhi colony police station yesterday to submit Pachauri’s two laptops had tried to video record the conversations between SHO and them.
“When the photographer was questioned, he said TERI officials have asked him to video record the conversations to help Pachauri in the case,” Khan said.
He added IT experts are not being allowed to enter TERI offices and even if allowed inside, no cooperation is extended to them and they are deliberately being made to wait.
The court maintained that the earlier conditions imposed on Pachauri like he will not enter the TERI office premises and he will not intimidate or threaten the complainant and the witnesses of the case will continue.
Earlier, on February 23, the court had issued notice to the IO of the case and sought his response on Pachauri’s anticipatory bail application.
On February 13, an FIR was registered against Pachauri for the offence of sexual harassment under sections 354 A and 354 D and for criminal intimidation under section 506 IPC at Lodhi Colony Police Station.