In a recent order on Thursday, the Allahabad High Court came to the rescue of a married woman who moved the High Court with her protection plea claiming that she is facing threats from her family members and therefore, sought direction to the police authorities to protect her and another man, with whom she is presently residing.
The Bench of Justice Devendra Kumar Upadhyaya and Justice Saroj Yadav directed the police authorities especially the Superintendent of Police, Gonda to protect the life and liberty of the petitioners while observing thus:
Indisputably she is major and highly educated and as such, she has legally protected right to exercise her own choice of deciding where to live, where to go, and where to reside.
Petitioner No.1, Mamta Devi holds a Post Graduate degree, and presently living with another man Janki Prasad (petitioner no. 2), while being married. Mamta has moved court along with her live-in partner seeking protection, claiming that she wants to pursue her studies further, however, her family members, especially the parents, have been creating some hurdles in her pursuing further studies.
She submitted that though she is married, at the moment for certain reasons, she is not living with her husband and finding some protection with her partner, with whom she is presently residing.
She also claimed that her family members even earlier attempted to harm her physically and thus she does not want to live with them. She also stated that at the instance of her family members, the younger brother of Prasad was unnecessarily harassed by the police.
Lastly, she submitted before the Court that some Chowki Incharge of Police Post Babhnan, District Gonda had called her on her mobile number and talked to her improperly.
Allahabad High Court
At the outset, the Court noted that for certain personal reasons, the married woman/petitioner no. 1 is not residing with her husband or her in-laws, however, the Court stressed that such decision of petitioner no. 1 is impermissible to be interfered with by any one including her family members. The court remarked,
Any such attempt from any corner either from her family members or even from police authorities will be a direct infringement and interference in her fundamental rights vested in her by the Constitution namely right to life and liberty both.
In the aforesaid circumstances, the Court disposed of the writ petition finally with a direction to the Superintendent of Police, Gonda to ensure that life and liberty of the petitioners are secured and further that no interference in the choice expressed and exercised by the petitioner no. 2 is caused from any corner either from her family members or from the police authorities.
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