“Which court shall deal with minor wrestlers' pleas against WFI Chief?”: High Court seeks Registrar General & Delhi Govt’s response

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Court was dealing with pleas by minor wrestlers seeking a "monitored investigation" against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brijbhushan Sharan Singh. 

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday sought response from the Delhi government and the Registrar General of the High Court, as to which court shall deal with pleas by minor wrestlers seeking a "monitored investigation" against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brijbhushan Sharan Singh.

During the hearing, Senior Advocate Narendra Hooda appearing for the wrestlers submitted that the case is of minors and against an MP/MLA. Hooda contended that the appropriate court for POCSO matters is Patiala House Court and for MP/MLA matters, it is Rouse Avenue Court. “However, there is no court deal with both, POCSO and MP/MLA and so the matter has been sent here”, he added.

To this, the bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma said, “Then what to do? You'll have to move the administrative side”.

The senior counsel replied, “This hon’ble court always has the jurisdiction to monitor it, till the time the administrative side takes a decision to have a court which can have both POCSO as well as MLA/MP cases”.

The single judge bench noted that the present petition had been listed from the communication received from Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (ACMM) Harjeet Singh Jaspal and that an application under Section 156(3) CrPC was filed before the Rouse Avenue Court to monitor the investigation against WFI President Brijbhushan Sharan Singh.

“The directions by the ACMM of Rouse Avenue Court were further sent to the Principal and Sessions Judge, Patiala House Court”, the court noted.

"In view of the office note, I consider the Registrar of the High Court and Principal Secretary, Government of NCT of Delhi are required to file their responses. Let a copy of the order be sent to the registrar general and government of NCT of Delhi", Justice Sharma ordered.

Accordingly, the court listed the matter for further consideration on July 6, 2023.

Notably, in April, seven wrestlers moved the Supreme Court seeking the registration of an FIR against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President and BJP MP Brij Bhushan Singh over allegations of sexual harassment. A CJI Chandrachud-led bench issued notice to the NCT of Delhi in the plea. The Apex Court had allowed the petitioners to submit additional documents before in a "sealed cover" in the Wrestlers' Federation of India (WFI) sexual harassment case.

The top court had directed the Commissioner of Police (Delhi) to adequately assess threat perception with respect to the alleged minor girl victim in the Wrestling Foundation of India (WFI) sexual harassment case and thereafter, make necessary security arrangements.

Case Title: XYZ-1 v. State of NCT of Delhi