Ltd. Col. S. Bajaj vs. State of Uttarakhand & Col. Jaipreet Singh
A habeas corpus writ petition was filed in the Uttarakhand High court under article 226 of the constitution of India. This petition was filed to secure the custody of son Arjun by safely removing him from the illegal detention of Col. Jaipreet Singh and present him before this Hon’ble Court. This petition was filed by the maternal uncle of the minor.
The matter was presented before the single judge bench of Hon’ble R.C. Khulbe, J.
About Article 226 of the Constitution of India
Article 226 of the constitution of India empowers the citizen of India to file a writ petition to the High Court for enforcement of fundamental rights granted under article 12-35 of the constitution of India.
The writ of habeas corpus- The literal meaning of the word “Habeas Corpus” is to have the body. This writ is filed for the presentation of any person who has been illegally detained by the state. In the matter of Child Custody, the Habeas corpus proceeding is a medium through which the custody of the child is addressed to the discretion of the court. In child custody matters, the power of the High Court in granting the writ is qualified only in cases where the detention of a minor by a person who is not entitled to his legal custody.
The writ of Habeas corpus for the custody of the child is filed only in the exceptional case when no ordinary relief is left with the aggrieved party.
The facts of the cases are that Arjun aged about 17 is been unlawfully detained by his father and the maternal uncle of Arjun has filed a writ petition of Habeas corpus for getting the custody of Arjun.
Rashmi Bajaj was the biological mother of Arjun and she passed away on 08.05.2021 due to Covid. Col. Jaipreet Singh and Rashmi Bajaj were married to each other and Arjun is their son. Col. Jaipreet Singh, who is the respondent in the case, treated Rashmi Bajaj with the utmost amount of mental and physical cruelty after the birth of Arjun. On 06.01.2021 the respondent sent notice to the deceased for divorce through mutual consent.
The petitioner has contended that the respondent has illegally detained Arjun and is not allowing him to meet any of his maternal relatives.
When the matter came up for hearing before the Uttarakhand High Court on 18.05.2021, a direction was issued to the State to produce Master Arjun before the Principal Judge/ Judge, Family Court, Dehradun on 21.05.2021 for recording his statement.
After listening to the statement of Arjun the court has been able to derive few important points:
After listening to the appeals of both the party and the statement of master Arjun the court taking into consideration the welfare of child has decided the following: