New Delhi: Taking stringent note of honey trapping incidents, the Delhi High Court has asked the Delhi Police Commissioner to submit a report within four weeks regarding such cases.
“…the Commissioner shall call reports from all the police stations of such cases as present one and file a report to this effect within four weeks,” said a single judge bench of the High Court presided by Justice Suresh Kumar Kait.
The court has also directed that if the Commissioner feels similar type of incident had happened in Delhi in the year 2020, he shall issue standing orders to all the concerned Police Stations that action may be taken as per law, however, without harassing such person/alleged accused therein.
The directions came in while a case was hearing a petition field by a businessman Kapil Gupta for grant of bail in a case against him on the charges of rape.
According to the petitioner, he and complainant both were completely unknown strangers to each other till August 24. At the first, the petitioner was approached by the complainant through Whatsapp message. As per the said chat, the complainant got petitioner’s number from Naukri.com (an online job portal) and asked whether the petitioner is looking for any ‘personal assistant’.
The petitioner answered the question in affirmative way. Instead of sending pictures in professional suits/attire, complainant sent her sensuous pictures in bathing suit/bikinis.
“…that chatting between the complainant and petitioner started at 12:46 p.m. and all these pictures had been sent by complainant herself to a complete stranger on his phone within three minutes i.e. at 12.49 p.m.
Moreover, the pictures had been shared in an otherwise professional chat purportedly happening for the job of ‘Personal Assistant’.
“Those ravishing pictures were deliberately shared by the complainant to entice the petitioner so that he might open up and could be put to right use in the trap which lay ahead. The chat which hitherto was between an employer and employee suddenly turned informal and petitioner started moving towards the trap,” the petitioner said.
On the same day, i.e. on 24.08.2020, the complainant and petitioner had a telephonic conversation wherein the complainant in her sweet, innocent voice invited the petitioner to her flat/house (at Saket) in the evening and she told him that she lives there with her sister, who leaves for her job by 6 p.m. (Night Shift) and thereafter she is all alone and invited him to come anytime thereafter.
The chats continued in a very informal sense, the complainant started sharing her personal details about her past and present, to introduce an emotional angle to the conversation so that petitioner feel more connected and comfortable while moving towards the trap. After making the petitioner comfortable, complainant asked “if u don’t mind can u get some wine… it’s been long time ache se chill ni kia maine” hinted that she was available for a long term relationship and wouldn’t mind love making.
Soon, all the inhibitions were shed and hitherto normal text messages got mixed with flirtatious, erotic undertones and all the advances by the petitioner in said direction were overly welcomed by the complainant and there was not an iota of any demur and/or any protest.
Senior advocate Vikas Pahwa, appearing for the petitioner argued that during the entire chatting, there is no whisper of any job opening or payment/salary structure or work timings or past job experiences etc; rather surprisingly to the contrary, she shares her bikni pictures by the pool and other seductive pictures in order to allure the petitioner.
“Once the petitioner was being seduced, the next step to call him at home was easy. The complainant called the petitioner at home and when her demand of Rs 5 lakh was not fulfilled, she registered an entirely fabricated, false and concocted case of rape against the Petitioner,” said Pahwa.
On the other hand, the prosecution alleges that prosecutrix, who was personal trainer and was looking for job had got number of the petitioner and in order to seek job she texted him.
He replied that he is looking for a “hot secretary” following which she said that they can discuss the same.
As per the prosecution, he then asked the complainant for a relationship to which she replied that she wasn’t comfortable and agreed for coffee.
Later, the petitioner called her and asked if she would have wine, to which she agreed and then shared the location of her home.
He came at her place. They were talking normally about profession. Then petitioner gave her two drinks and she was so high, he started removing her clothes. He started punching on her right leg and he raped her. She was helpless and was crying.
She was trying to call her neighbours. He raped her with no protection and asked her to open the door, however, her leg was paining like hell. He hit her so many times. She scratched him on chest. She called her neighbour.
When she (neighbour) came, she saw the petitioner ran away from her house after raping her. She further stated that petitioner asked her for physical relations, she replied in negative, and then he removed her clothes and started hitting her and raping her.
The prosecution opposed the present petition by stating that presence of the petitioner at the spot is not in dispute and that he had admittedly gone to the house of the complainant with wine bottles and seen pictures as he claimed to have sent by the complainant. He had no business to attend her call and go to a stranger lady at her place after a first conversation.
“Thus, the allegations are serious against the petitioner, therefore, the petition deserves to be dismissed,” the prosecution stated.
However, Pahwa contended that his client has been trapped and tricked under a well-designed, meticulously planned and thoroughly woven racket of extortionists.
“When the petitioner came to know that complainant had lodged FIR in question, he made representations/reply on August 30 to SHO Police Station Mehrauli and Commissioner of Police, Delhi. However, no action has been taken. Thereafter, on September 9, the petitioner filed a complaint to the Police Station Mehrauli for taking action against the complainant and her associates for extortion of money,” Pahwa contended.
“Even in second time, no action has been taken and having no alternative, petitioner filed complaint/petition under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. on September 18. The learned Magistrate asked the ATR from the police station and matter is fixed on November 7 for further proceedings,” said Pahwa.
Pahwa further pointed out that modus operandi, which is prevailing now a days in such kind of cases can be divided into three parts.
First – contact random strangers by different modes viz. Whatsapp, Facebook, Instagram and other social networking sites; second — if the person responds, means he is interested, then seduce him / her by sending pictures, videos or chatting; third — when the strangers were trapped, call him/ her at home and then make videos, level false charges/accusations, intimidate and thereafter demand money, Pahwa submitted.
Following these arguments, the bench noted, “…I am of the view that petitioner deserves protection from this Court. Accordingly, the SHO/IO concerned is directed that in the event of arrest, the petitioner/applicant shall be released on bond on his furnishing a personal bond in the sum of Rs 25,000/-.”
The court further directed that petitioner shall co-operate with the investigation and make himself available for interrogation by police officer, as and when required.
“Petitioner shall not contact /influence prosecutrix and prosecution witnesses,” It said further.
“Though acceptance allurement is not justified but at the same time, allurement advanced for extortion of money is also not acceptable,” Justice Kait said.
The court also directed Delhi Police Commissioner to personally look into the matter and see whether the complainant herein and others are indulged in any other such type of cases, if so, appropriate action may be taken against the culprits.