Home / India News / Delhi HC seeks police response on Tharoor’s plea to keep wife’s Twitter account, tweets
The Delhi High Court on Monday sought the Delhi Police’s response on a plea filed by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor seeking direction to it to take measures to preserve the Twitter account and tweets made by his wife socialite Sunanda Pushkar before her sudden death in 2014.
Justice Manoj Kumar Ohri, who was hearing the petition, issued a notice to the Delhi Police on Tharoor’s application.
The plea sought a direction to the investigating officer (IO) in the case to write a letter to social media micro-blogging platform ‘Twitter’ to secure and preserve the inactive Twitter account of Sunanda Pushkar, as her tweets are crucial for the criminal trial.
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Tharoor, is the prime accused in the death case of his wife, and has sought direction to the Delhi police to take steps to preserve the social media account and tweets by asking ‘Twitter India’ to preserve Pushkar’s account till the legal proceedings are over before the trial court.
The court, which held the hearing through a video conference, has listed the matter for further hearing on July 15.
Senior advocate Vikas Pahwa and lawyer Gaurav Gupta represented the Congress MP and argued that perusal of Pushkar’s tweets would reflect her actual frame of mind which is contrary to the case built by the prosecution.
The lawyers said that she never had any suicidal tendencies which were reflected in the series of tweets withheld by the Delhi Police from the trial court.
Tharoor, in his application, has said the tweets and Twitter timeline of Pushkar are of vital importance in the case and there is an apprehension that they might be deleted, denying him a crucial right to exonerate himself from the alleged charges brought against him by the prosecution.
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The former Union minister was accused by the Delhi Police under Sections 498-A (husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty) and 306 (abetment of suicide) of the Indian Penal Code.
The plea also referred to Twitter’s policies as per which it can delete the accounts of users who have been inactive for a prolonged period of time.
“Further, in certain cases, if some authorized person or close relative of a deceased person contacts Twitter, the account of such a deceased person can be deactivated. In such cases of deletion of account or deactivation of account, the tweets and contents of the Twitter timeline are lost forever,” the plea said.
The Delhi Police had earlier told the court that Pushkar was suffering from mental agony due to a strained relationship with her husband. She had allegedly had a scuffle with her husband and had various injury marks a few days before her death, it had said.
The maximum punishment for the offence listed in the chargesheet is 10 years of imprisonment. However, if convicted for 302 (murder), the maximum punishment is death penalty while the minimum is life imprisonment.
Pushkar, 51, was found dead in a suite of luxury hotel Leela Palace in Delhi’s Chanakyapuri on the night of January 17, 2014. The couple was staying at the hotel at that time.