A CCTV footage of Justice (retired) Nooty Rama Mohan Rao harassing and hitting his daughter in law along with his wife and his son has surfaced about five months after they were charged by Hyderabad police for allegedly harassing and assaulting the daughter in law.
The alleged CCTV video footage with a date stamp of April 20, 2019, was made public by the family of Rao’s daughter-in-law, M Sindhu Sarma.
Nooty Rama Mohan Rao served at the Andhra Pradesh and Madras High Court. Rao retired in April 2017.
The purported video shows Rao’s son N Vashishta harassing his wife Sindhu while they are in the middle of an argument at their residence. Rao and his wife Durga Jayalakshmi walk in and Jayalakshmi makes an attempt to interfere and stop the fight. Whereas Vashishta is seen punching and slapping his wife Sindhu, Rama Mohan Rao can be seen in the video pulling her arms and pushing her on to a sofa.
At the end of the alleged video, a child, Sarma’s daughter, can be seen entering the room. The girl runs to her mother and clings on to her mother’s leg. The child has later pulled away and sent out of the room.
On April 27, 2019, Sindhu had lodged a complaint at the Hyderabad Police Central Crime Station alleging physical and mental abuse and assault by her husband and mother-in-law. Sindhu said that, she was assaulted and required hospitalization on April 20 night.
M V Sarma, Sindhu’s father said they had lodged the complaint against Justice (retired) Rao, Vashisht and Durga Lakshmi at the CCS under sections 498A, 323 of IPC, sections 4 and 6 of the DP Act. “After assaulting my daughter on April 20 night which resulted in injuries, they themselves admitted my daughter at Apollo Hospital. She has cuts and abrasions on her back, chest, and hands. They tried to portray that my daughter is mentally unsound and inflicted the wounds on her own,’’ he said.
According to a report in The Indian Express, DCP Avinash Mohanty said that the complainant had promised to give the CCTV footage but had never submitted it. “When we registered the complaint on behalf of Sindhu Sarma, she and her family stated they would help the investigation by providing videos of the alleged assaults on her. We have already taken the statement of Vashishta, the house helps, Sindhu, and her father,” he said.
“In spite of sending several notices since April, Sindhu never submitted the video of the alleged assault on her. After she filed the complaint, the couple was called for counselling to see if they could reconcile for the sake of their young children. The talks and negotiations are still on but we did not see any solution and meanwhile, Sindhu’s family has released this video. We will examine it and initiate action.’’
One of Sindhu’s uncles who had requested anonymity, said: “The video clearly shows that the retired judge and his wife did nothing to prevent the assault on Sindhu.”
“The judge himself participated in the attack on my daughter along with his wife Durga Lakshmi. They were harassing her for many years to get additional dowry but she refused so she was targeted. They wanted more money to launch their son Vashishta, Sindhu’s husband into some construction business,’’ said Sindhu’s father.