A Bengaluru woman who had been arrested for allegedly murdering her daughter-in-law was granted bail after Karnataka High Court ruled that her HIV status must be considered when reviewing her bail application. The 48-year-old woman had been in prison since September 2018 after she was arrested for torturing her daughter-in-law to death for dowry.
“The Sessions Court, by its order dated December 31, 2018 rejected the bail application, despite observing that the petitioner is HIV-positive. The fact that the accused-petitioner is HIV-positive is also a fact to be considered while deciding as to whether the petitioner is entitled to be released on bail,” stated the court.
Justice S Sunil Dutt Yadav oversaw the hearing and ruled that the woman could be granted bail.
“Note is taken of the fact that chargesheet has been filed after the investigation. The fact as to whether the deceased was driven to end her life as a result of the role of the petitioner along with other accused is a matter to be established in trial. More so, in this case, the petitioner is the mother-in-law of the deceased and whether her acts for demand of dowry constitute an offence is a matter to be proved during trial. Further, as regards to the other allegation that the petitioner had burnt a portion of saree fabric used by the deceased to hang herself is also a matter to be established in trial,” stated the court.
While the woman has been granted bail, the court has ordered her to execute a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh.
The deceased’s parents have alleged that their daughter was routinely harassed by the accused and her son (deceased’s husband) for dowry and that they killed her. The accused, however, denied this and maintained that her daughter-in-law had committed suicide. The deceased was found hanging at her residence on September 25, 2018.