New Delhi: A court here has sentenced a former court employee to a five-year jail term for threatening and trying to extort money from a judge in 2007. Highlighting as an extraordinary case, the prosecution submitted that he committed this crime by putting the victim Judge in fear for a considerable time for his illegal gain.
Maximum punishment should be awarded to him so as to send a message to the society, it was argued. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Dr Pankaj Sharma held the man guilty of offences under Section 387 (putting person in fear of death or of grievous hurt, in order to commit extortion) and 506 part II (if threat be to cause death or grievous hurt) of the Indian Penal Code.
The convict submitted that he has already suffered a lot as his job has been lost and he has faced humiliation and indignity in the society. It is submitted that convict is the only son of his parents as his mother is old having disc fracture of backbone and is bed ridden. His father has mouth cancer and he is also severely ill. As a son, he is taking care of his ailing parents through a meager income from tuition. It is submitted that accused has four months old daughter and he is taking care of the family.
The accused worked as a Ahlmad with the complainant and obviously during that time, became aware of her family members and her vulnerabilities. The convict acted like an obdurate criminal by continuously texting threatening messages to the victim for extortion, the order read.
It is a matter of fact that at a workplace trust plays an important role and generally co-employees or officer trust his or her support staff. The convict misused that very trust by becoming aware of the vulnerability of his boss and made a sinister plan to extort money from her by putting her in fear of death of her children.
The threat extended by him were direct and same were capable of putting the complainant in fear and the tone and tenor of the messages was enough to raise an alarm to her which had infact caused great fear, anguish and agony in her mind. Being the mother of two children she would have naturally got threatened and the same had in fact impacted her mind and work.
The terror created by convict had certainly disturbed her peace of mind and even the tempo of doing her official duties. Convict has not only betrayed the trust of her boss i.e. complainant but he has also shattered the trust which an officer reposes with his/her support staff, the court observed.
It was also noted that creating fear in the mind of the Judge affects his/her ability to function properly which directly affects the justice dispensation system and same is an unpardonable act. The crime of the convict is an egregious act that has affected the stream of justice and also created trust deficit among Judges and support staff. The crime committed by convict is required to be dealt in a manner which could prevent recurrence of such incidents in future.