Man accused of dragging DCW chief Swati Maliwal gets bail

A Delhi court on Saturday granted bail to Harish Chander, the man accused of dragging Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chairperson Swati Maliwal by car for 10-15 metres outside the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) on January 19 after her hand got stuck in the vehicle’s window.

Sanghamitra, the Mahila Court Metropolitan Magistrate at the Saket court complex, noted that at this point, it is not proved whether the accused might threaten witnesses or tamper with evidence.

“Considering the facts and circumstances of the present case, I am of the view that no useful purpose will be served by keeping the accused behind bars,” she said.

She granted Chander bail on certain conditions like he shall not attemot to get in touch with the complainant, her family members, witnesses, threaten them or tamper with any evidence.

Directing the accused to cooperate with the probe, she directed the accused to furnish a bond of Rs 50,000 along with a surety of the same amount.

Chander was arrested after a case under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code was registered at the Kotla Mubarakpur police station.

Chander’s counsel submitted that Maliwal has falsely implicated his client in the case, adding that the his client drove away the car further as he was afraid of being looted.

The court was informed that the police have declared that the matter would not need any further custodial interrogation.

Maliwal’s lawyer said that it is important to take into account the danger the individual poses to the citizens of the national capital.

The DCW chief had alleged that she was molested by a drunk man while on an inspection at night, adding that she was dragged for 10-15 metres by his car outside AIIMS after her hand got stuck in the vehicle’s window.

After a video of the incident surfaced on social media, several BJP leaders had termed the incident as a staged drama by Maliwal, intended to defame Delhi internationally by showing the national capital as an unsafe city for women. They had also claimed that the accused Chander is a prominent Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) worker in the Sangam Vihar area. Incidentally, Maliwal is an AAP appointee.

Coming down heavily on the BJP’s allegations on Saturday, Maliwal said that she will keep fighting till she is alive.

Taking to Twitter, Maliwal said: “Let me tell those who think that they will scare me by telling dirty lies about me. I have done many big things in this short life, with a shroud on my head. I was attacked many times, but did not stop. With every atrocity, the fire inside me grew stronger. No one can suppress my voice. I will keep fighting as long as I am alive!”

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