Jailed ex-IPS officer's wife seeks police protection

Jailed ex-IPS officer's wife seeks police protection

Gujarat High Court. File photo

Ex-IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt's wife Shweta Bhatt has moved Gujarat High Court seeking police protection for her family. She has alleged that "she is being followed by unknown and plaincloth police personnel" and she "feels threatened" and "her privacy is being breached".

The high court on Wednesday issued a notice and directed the state police chief and Ahmedabad police commissioner to respond. The court will hear the matter on May 10.

Shweta Bhatt, in a petition, moved through her lawyer Anand Yagnik, claimed that "being followed by anybody is a threat perception for the petitioner, as it is nothing but breach of privacy besides being undue harassment. Being consistently and continuously surrounded by unknown eyes creates a kind of threat and fear no matter whether it is Gujarat police or somebody else. Therefore, the petitioner requires police protection may be against the police in plain clothes."

She has also mentioned an incident when she and her son met with an accident when a truck rammed into her car near IIM-A. In the petition, she said: "Subject to correction, Gujarat police in plain clothes continuous, consistently and perniciously follows the petitioner and her son wherever they go... The petitioner makes it clear that she feels threatened by both i.e. Gujarat police in plain clothes and unknown, who are following their movements. Therefore, somebody will have to police the police."

Shweta claimed that she and her family were "vulnerable from several quarters" since her husband Sanjiv Bhatt was in judicial custody and the police protection given to them was withdrawn. She also mentioned about the demolition of a portion of her house.

Her petition says that she had contested assembly election in 2012 against the then-chief minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi from Maninagar constituency. "This has enraged many and since then petitioner also is facing issues of her security. The petitioner is also a victim of hate mongering," says the petition.

The petition mentions about her husband ex-IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt's depositions and an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court "bringing to fore the involvement of the highest functionaries of the then-Gujarat Government in allowing the mob violence that ensued in 2002 and deliberately directing the police to not to act to prevent such crimes." Bhatt is lodged in jail since September 2018 following his arrest in an alleged narcotics case. His bail plea is likely to come up for hearing the apex court on this Friday.