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Avinash Tripathy vs State Of Odisha on 14 March, 2019

IN THE HIGH COURT OF ORISSA, CUTTACK

BLAPL NO. 1065 OF 2019

An application under section 439 of the Code of Criminal
Procedure in connection with Lalbag P.S. Case No.112 of 2018
which corresponds to G.R. Case No.1386 of 2018 Pending in the
Court learned S.D.J.M. (Sadar), Cuttack.
—————————-
Avinash Tripathy …….. Petitioner

-Versus-
State of Odisha ……. Opp. Party

For Petitioner: – Mr. Srinivas Mohanty
Kabita Patra
Satya Pradhan

For Informant: – Mr. Sangram Ku. Das
Bini Mishra
B.N. Mohapatra

For State of Odisha: – Mr. Purna Chandra Das
Addl. Standing Counsel
——————————-

P R E S E N T:

THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE S.K. SAHOO

—————————————————————————————————
Date of Argument: 13.03.2019 Date of Order: 14.03.2019

—————————————————————————————————

S. K. SAHOO, J. One, who falls prey to emotional blackmail, becomes

a puppet in the hands of a blackmailer. One, who does not resist

at right time, becomes the victim of repetitive harassment and

exploitation. Fear psychosis is created to manipulate and
2

paralyse the victim. One, who screams inside the heart for

suffering without a word of protest in the mouth and has no

courage to face the reality of life after telling the truth to the

close confidants and life partner, gives an opportunity to the

shrewd blackmailer to take advantage of one’s simplicity or some

mistakes which he/she might have committed in the past. Giving

a second chance to a blackmailer is like giving an extra bullet for

his gun.

The petitioner Avinash Tripathy has knocked at the

portals of this Court by filing an application under section 439 of

Cr.P.C. in connection with Lalbag P.S. Case No.112 of 2018

registered under sections 294, 354, 420, 506 read with section

34 of the Indian Penal Code and sections 66-D and 67-E of the

Information Technology Act, 2000 which corresponds to G.R.

Case No.1386 of 2018 pending in the Court learned S.D.J.M.

(Sadar), Cuttack.

The bail application of the petitioner was rejected by

the learned Addl. Sessions Judge -cum- Addl. Special Judge,

Vigilance, Cuttack in Bail Application No.95 of 2019 vide order

dated 28.01.2019.

The victim is a practising advocate of this Court and

her father is also a Senior lawyer. She lodged the first
3

information report before the Inspector in charge of Lalbag police

station, Cuttack on 28.07.2018 indicating therein as to how she

was continuously blackmailed by the petitioner on several

occasions who used her indecent photographs and morphed

photographs to spoil her marital life, extracted money from her

repeatedly, defamed her in public, tried to outrage her modesty

and caused continuous mental harassment by scandalizing her in

public and assassinated her character.

After lodging of the first information report, the

investigating officer examined the victim, her family members

and number of witnesses who also supported the case of the

victim. The victim in her statement recorded under section 161

Cr.P.C. narrated her painful experience as to how the petitioner

started blackmailing game with her by claiming to have some of

her indecent photographs which he had taken secretively without

her knowledge and also morphed some photographs by technical

means, how even after her marriage with Major Soumya Ranjan

Pati in the year 2013, he compelled her to visit many places by

threatening her to disclose the photographs to her husband and

in-laws and also to make it in public, how the petitioner forced

her to buy expensive gifts for him, took about Rs.12 to 13 lakh

from her in various ways and tried to create difference between
4

her and her husband. Several incriminating documents were

seized during course of investigation including the WhatsApp

messages and messages sent to the Gmail of the victim by the

petitioner. The investigation is still under progress.

Mr. Srinivas Mohanty, learned counsel appearing for

the petitioner contended that the petitioner is in judicial custody

since 20.01.2019 and the investigation has made substantial

progress. The allegations levelled in the F.I.R. against the

petitioner are false and fabricated. He placed the undertaking

given by the petitioner before the Inspector in charge, Lalbag

police station on 28.05.2018 which is annexed to the bail

application as Annexure-6 which indicates that the petitioner

undertook to pay a sum of Rs.5,00,000/-(rupees five lakh only)

to the victim and handed over Rs.50,000/- (rupees fifty

thousand only) to her father on that day in the police station and

assured to give the balance amount by 27.07.2018. Learned

counsel submitted that such an undertaking was forcefully

obtained from the petitioner and since the balance amount was

not paid, the case has been foisted against the petitioner and a

case of civil liability has been given a colour of a criminal case.

He further submitted that the materials on record indicate that

the victim was having extra marital relationship not only with the
5

petitioner but also with one Amit Kumar Nanda and in that

respect her husband Soumya Ranjan Pati who is a Major in Army

has given his reply to the Commanding Officer after receipt of

the complaint of the victim and also lodged an F.I.R. before

Inspector in charge of Airfield police station, Bhubaneswar. The

husband of the victim has filed a divorce case against her before

the Judge, Family Court, Cuttack vide Civil Proceeding No. 19 of

2019 and the petitioner has been targeted by the victim in order

to escape from the accusation levelled against her by her

husband. It is further submitted that the petitioner is serving as

an Executive in Nestle India Ltd. and there is no chance of his

absconding and also tampering with the evidence and therefore,

the bail application may be favourably considered.

Mr. Purna Chandra Das, learned Addl. Standing

Counsel on the other hand opposed the prayer for bail and

submitted that there are prima facie materials against the

petitioner relating to his involvement in the crime and the

investigation is under progress and many important witnesses

are yet to be examined and there is likelihood of tampering with

the evidence by the petitioner and therefore, he should not be

released on bail.

6

Learned counsel for the informant opposed the

prayer for bail and produced an affidavit of the victim in which

she has annexed the first information reports which were

submitted before the Inspectors in charge of Mangalabag police

station as well as Khandagiri police station relating to the threat

given by the petitioner to the victim as well as to the witness.

The victim herself came forward to oppose the

application for bail and tried to convince as to under what

compelling circumstances, she could not lodge the F.I.R. early

against the petitioner. She stated that the petitioner is now hand

in gloves with her husband for which he could get access to the

documents of Army which are internal communication between

the Commanding Officer and her husband and also the divorce

petition copy which are annexed to the bail application. She

submitted that averments taken in paragraph 2 of the bail

application are beyond record and completely derogatory.

Adverting to the contentions raised by the learned

counsel for the respective parties and on going through the

statements of the victim and other witnesses as well as the

documents collected during course of investigation, it prima facie

appears that when the victim first lodged a report against the

petitioner on 27.05.2018 alleging continuous harassment to her,
7

the petitioner was called to Lalbag police station where he

apologised for his conduct and confessed his mistakes and gave

a written undertaking not to indulge in any activity to defame the

victim, to pay a sum of Rs.5,00,000/- to the victim which he had

earlier taken from the victim and paid Rs.50,000/- to the father

of the victim on that day and assured to pay the balance cash of

Rs.4,50,000/- by 27.07.2018. The petitioner thereafter on two

occasions tried to follow the victim to create a fear psychosis in

her for which the F.I.R. was lodged on 28.07.2018. The manner

in which while on interim bail, the petitioner tried to take law

into his own hand is reflected in the first information reports

which are annexed to the affidavit of the victim. The case diary

reveals that during course of investigation, the petitioner in

order to avoid arrest fled away from his house and was roaming

in New Delhi, Lucknow, Chennai, Bengaluru and other places. I

find prima facie case against the petitioner relating to

commission of offences under which the case has been

registered. What would be the fate of divorce proceeding filed by

the husband of the victim against her and whether the

allegations levelled against the victim by her husband in the

divorce petition would be acceptable or not, is a matter which is

to be adjudicated by the competent Court where the case is

subjudiced. It would not be proper to give any opinion at this
8

stage as to whether the petitioner has been targeted by the

victim in order to escape from the accusation levelled against her

by her husband. Similarly if the victim feels that the averments

made in paragraph 2 of the bail application which is supported

by affidavit is derogatory and without any substance and have

been made for demeaning her character, she is not remediless.

Taking into account the nature and gravity of

accusation, the nature of supporting evidence, the severity of

punishment in case of conviction, chances of tampering with the

witnesses and particularly when the investigation is under

progress, without detailed examination of the evidence and

elaborate discussions on the merits of the case, I am of the

humble view that it would not be proper at this stage to grant

bail to the petitioner.

Accordingly, the bail application being devoid of

merits, stands dismissed.

………………………….

S. K. Sahoo, J.

Orissa High Court, Cuttack
The 14th March 2019/Sukanta

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