Female entrepreneur fined 25 lakh for threatening official with false molestation case, violating court order
The Bombay High Court made an example out of a female entrepreneur, who violated its order and threatened a court official with a false molestation case, by fining her company Rs 25 lakh.
Back in December, the court passed the order in a matter where Mumbai-based ‘Sapat and Company’ had filed a plea against Haryana-based ‘Feel Good India’ for a copyright violation.
In its order, the court restrained Feel Good from infringing the copyright of the Sapat and Company’s cough syrup product and appointed a court receiver to seize goods from the company’s factories.
However on January 4, when then court receiver went to record the procedure, the firm’s proprietor Neha Gandhir stopped the official from discharging his duty and tried to snatch his phone.
She also tried to stop workers from seizing the packaging material and threatened to file a molestation case against them.
Taking cognizance of the owner’s misuse of gender protection laws and failure to adhere with the earlier order, the court slapped a fine of Rs 25 lakh on the company, owned by Gandhir and her husband.
“Such gross and patent misuse of a socially enabling piece of legislation has to be sternly condemned by the Courts and dealt with a very stern hand,” Justice S Kathawalla was quoted as saying.
Gandhir’s lawyers sought leniency from the court on the grounds that the statements were made in a fit of rage. But the bench refused to let the behaviour slide.
“If such abhorrent behaviour is left unpunished, by showing compassion to a person who knowingly, grossly abuses the process of law, and thereafter attempts to justify the same by saying that she did it in a fit of rage, the court will send out a wrong message to the general public,” it said
The fine was slapped on January 11 and has to be paid in three installments by February 28, 2019. Out of these 25 lakhs, 5 lakhs are to be paid to the applicant and 20 lakhs are to be donated to the Tata Memorial Hospital.