"The woman lawyer came to know that the unknown numbers were from Pakistan with the help of a software on her cell phone."
New Delhi, May 28 - The Supreme Court Wednesday asked the Delhi Police chief to respond to a plea seeking transfer to the CBI of investigation into the alleged manhandling of a woman lawyer by policemen.

Directing protection for the woman lawyer, the bench of Justice B.S. Chauhan and Justice A.K. Sikri said the affidavit spelling out the police response should be by an officer of the rank of joint commissioner.

The court said the police response should reach it by June 3.

The woman lawyer practising in the apex court said she was manhandled by police personnel April 4, when she went to the Lajpat Nagar police station to serve an order passed by the Saket district court restraining the eviction of vegetable vendors.

The court Wednesday also directed that police personnel at Lajpat Nagar police station would keep off the woman lawyer and witnesses to the manhandling incident.

The court order came as counsel Vijay Hansaria, who is amicus curiae in the case, told the court that police came to the house of the woman advocate around 11 p.m.

The amicus curiae had moved an application Tuesday seeking transfer of investigation to the CBI as police personnel at the Lajpat Nagar police station were resorting to intimidating tactics to make witnesses resile from their earlier statements.

Earlier, a bench headed by Chief Justice R.M. Lodha took suo motu cognizance of the incident, and treated a complaint by the Supreme Court Women Lawyers Association to the Delhi Police commissioner as a petition.

The court, while issuing notice May 9, asked the police commissioner to submit a report on action taken on the April 12 complaint by the aggrieved woman lawyer and the April 28 complaint by the Supreme Court Bar Association.

By the same order, police were asked to ensure that no harm comes to the woman lawyer.

The court also appointed Hansaria as amicus curiae in the matter.

Tuesday's application seeking transfer of investigation to the CBI said that after the court's order asking the police commissioner to file a report on action taken against the policemen, the witnesses were being intimidated.

The court was told that the woman lawyer suddenly started received repeated phone calls from some unknown Pakistani number.

The woman lawyer came to know that the unknown numbers were from Pakistan with the help of a software on her cell phone.

The amicus curiae expressed apprehension that the woman lawyer was under some kind of surveillance and her phone was being tapped.


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