She should not be summoned to station or remanded in police custody
The District and Sessions Court, Imphal West, has ordered the immediate release of a rape victim, who was remanded in police custody for five days by a Thoubal court for recording her statement.
Judge Imocha Salam also warned sub-inspector Sujalata K, the investigating officer, against summoning a rape victim to a police station, and asked her to read up on the Criminal Procedure Code.
On a complaint by an 18-year-old pregnant woman that Somorjit Soibam of Wangjing Hodamba Leikai raped her on the night of December 27, the victim and the accused were produced simultaneously in the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Thoubal. No member of the victim’s family was allowed in the courtroom. The victim and the 44-year-old accused, a married man with children, were forced to sit face to face during the proceedings, reports said.
On December 29, judge Noutuneswori ordered the detention of the victim in police custody on the plea of the investigation officer, who said she wanted to record her statement.
On Monday, Rakesh Meihoubam, advocate and director of the Human Rights Law Network Director, filed a petition before the District and Session Judge, who ruled that a rape victim could not be remanded in police custody, nor could she be summoned to a police station.
In another case, judge Imocha Salam summoned the chief medical officer of the Central Jail at Sajiwa, Manipur, to record his statement on the health of Rojit Laikhuram, one of the four accused of gang-raping a tribal woman. Laikhuram sought bail, saying he needed better treatment for a serious disease he was suffering from.