Retired HC judge booked in Hyd for allegedly assaulting daughter-in-law over dowry

(Update: TNM spoke to the daughter-in-law after the videos of domestic violence surfaced. Read the story here: ‘All 3 of them attacked me’: Daughter-in-law of retd HC judge on domestic violence video)

A retired judge, who served at the Hyderabad and Madras High Courts, was booked by the police in Hyderabad for allegedly harassing his daughter-in-law for dowry and assaulting her last week.

The complainant, 30-year-old Sindhu Sharma, had approached the Central Crime Station in the city and alleged that Justice Nooty Ramamohana Rao, his wife, Nooty Durga Jaya Laxmi and their son, Nooty Vasista, had repeatedly harassed her, allegedly over dowry, and also physically assaulted her.

Ramamohana Rao was a senior judge, who was transferred from the Hyderabad High Court in 2016 and had retired in August 2017 while serving at the Madras HC. He had also served at the Madurai bench of the HC for a brief period.

Speaking to TNM, Srinivas Madagula, the complainant's uncle, alleged, "The wedding took place in 2012. They were continuously harassing her and demanding dowry from then itself. Over the last two years or so, it escalated with the family beating her mercilessly, and putting her through mental torture."

On April 20, the family allegedly thrashed Sindhu to such an extent that she had to be rushed to a hospital.

"They took her to Apollo hospital in Jubilee Hills and seeing her injuries, the doctors insisted on a medico-legal case (MLC)," Srinivas said.

A copy of the MLC, which is with TNM, shows doctors stating that there were nail abrasions over the chest, suggesting that someone had scratched her, besides abrasions in other parts of her body. The doctors also noted that there were bruises over the right shoulder and right forearm.

"After she was admitted to the hospital, she regained proper consciousness and called her parents and me around midnight, saying that she had been beaten up. After 1 am, a Sub Inspector from the Jubilee Hills police station visited the hospital and took down her statement, but she could not recollect events properly as she was under mental duress," her uncle said.

She was later discharged and taken to her parents’ house at Uppal by her family, where she is currently recovering.

"They have also snatched her two children; one is a three-year-old girl while the other is a one-and-a-half-year-old infant," Srinivas alleged.

The woman's family also alleged that complaints were filed in the past and repeated attempts at counselling by the police also did not yield any results. The two families also attempted to work out an amicable solution, but in vain, following which the woman's family decided to opt for legal recourse.

Meanwhile, a case has been registered under IPC sections 498A (Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty), 406 (Criminal breach of trust) and 323 (Voluntarily causing hurt) and Section 6 of the Dowry Prevention Act against the three accused.

While no arrests were made, the three accused are expected to be summoned by the police for questioning.

TNM reached out to the retired judge’s family but they refused to offer a comment, claiming it was a ‘private matter.’

(Update: TNM spoke to the daughter-in-law after the videos of domestic violence surfaced. Read the story here: ‘All 3 of them attacked me’: Daughter-in-law of retd HC judge on domestic violence video)