New Delhi: The Delhi high court has dismissed the plea filed by an accused in a rape case seeking interim bail to perform last rites of his father, saying it would be dangerous to release him in the current coronavirus pandemic situation as he will be in touch with many people outside increasing the risk of infection.

The court also said the bail application was totally silent on various aspects including record of recovery of the body of man’s father who allegedly died by drowning, documents of cremation and details of other ceremonies.

“There is another aspect of this matter. The village of the petitioner (accused) is around 800km from Delhi so it will be highly dangerous to release the petitioner on interim bail as it is not known as to how many persons he will get in touch while he is present in his village,” Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar said.

The court added, “There are great chances of his being infected and then his coming to jail after a period of interim bail would further complicate the matter which cannot be allowed in the current pandemic situation. Needless to repeat that the interim bail application is totally bereft of any details.”

Accused Rakesh Kumar claimed that his father died on April 9 by drowning in a river in Kurwa village in Uttar Pradesh Ambedkar Nagar and sought to be released on interim bail for two months to perform the last rites and to settle family affairs.

The man, against whom a rape case was registered against Kumar in 2014 at Anand Parbat police station, said he has been lodged in the jail for over six years.

The prosecution opposed the bail plea saying nothing has been placed on record to show that the man’s father died on April 9 due to drowning and contended that the allegations against him are serious in nature as he is accused of raping a minor girl.

The high court, while dismissing the bail plea, said “Nothing has been placed on record to show that the father of the petitioner expired on April 9 by drowning. The petitioner could have filed the police documents regarding the recovery of the dead body of his father or any document to show that he was cremated.”

“More so, in the entire bail application it is not stated as to what all ceremonies have to take place, and on which date these ceremonies are to be performed. The bail application is totally silent on this aspect.”

The court, which was informed by the prosecutor that the trial court has fixed the matter for pronouncement of judgement, said it was expected from the lower court that the verdict would be passed as expeditiously as possible and when the situation warrants.