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Thursday, December 31, 2020

Indira Gandhi wants IGP to answer where her former husband is

 


The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) has refused to answer a formal set of questions on the efforts of the police to arrest M Indira Gandhi’s Muslim convert ex-husband and recover their daughter Prasana Diksa.

In response, kindergarten teacher Indira will be filing an application in court to compel the top cop to answer the 36 interrogatories in her suit over the police’s alleged failure to track down Muhammad Riduan Abdullah and recover Prasana.

Prasana was an infant when her father Riduan, previously named K Pathmanathan, reportedly took her away in 2009 after converting to Islam.

Riduan and Indira were later engaged in a tightly-watched interfaith custody battle after he unilaterally converted Prasana and their two other children to Islam.

Her counsel Rajesh Nagarajan today revealed that they will be filing the application because the IGP refused to answer the set of questions.

Under civil litigation, interrogatories are a formal set of written questions required to be answered by the defendant to help clarify matters of fact and determine in advance the facts to be presented in a trial.

“The IGP declined to answer the interrogatories, which is a list of questions meant to expedite the suit.

“The IGP replied via a letter stating his refusal to answer the questions, and that he would instead answer them during the trial.

“We will be filing an application to compel him to answer the interrogatories,” Rajesh told Malaysiakini today.

Rajesh Nagarajan

According to a copy of the letter dated Dec 30, the IGP’s legal representative informed Indira’s legal team that the IGP and three other defendants in the suit do not need to answer the 36 questions.

The representative from the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) said that the issues need to be raised during the trial of the suit, whereby witnesses can be questioned in open-court proceedings.

“The answer to the questions is in the form of testimony that is only proper to be raised during the hearing,” the senior federal counsel from the AGC said.

The AGC appears for the IGP and three other defendants in the suit, namely the police, the Home Ministry and the government of Malaysia.

According to a copy of the interrogatories sighted by Malaysiakini, the court filing, among others, asks whether the police had failed to arrest Riduan in the years 2014 to 2020.

Other questions deal with whether the police failed to retrieve and return Prasana to Indira in the same time period.

Among other questions raised are whether the police know of the whereabouts of Riduan during the same time period.

According to Indira's lawsuit, the IGP allegedly failed to abide by two orders of the High Court in Ipoh, which were issued on May 30, 2014.

The first order was a committal order for Riduan to be jailed for failing to return Prasana to Indira.

Muhammad Riduan Abdullah

The second one was a recovery order for the Royal Malaysian Police and the court bailiff to retrieve Prasana from Riduan and return her to Indira.

Indira claimed that the IGP has committed a tort of nonfeasance in public office by failing to arrest Riduan and recover Prasana.

The plaintiff is seeking declarations that the IGP has committed a tort of nonfeasance in public office and that the other three defendants are vicariously liable for the first defendant’s (IGP’s) tort of nonfeasance.

Indira is also seeking general, aggravated, and exemplary damages, interest, costs and any other order deemed fit by the court. - Mkini

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