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Ukrainian woman case: Delhi HC to seek report from child counsellor to analyse welfare of 3-year-old boy

ANI | Updated: Nov 29, 2022 23:42 IST

New Delhi [India], November 29 (ANI): Hearing the plea of a Ukrainian woman regarding the custody of her 3-year-old son, the Delhi High court on Tuesday said it will seek the report from a child counsellor as the child has undergone enough trauma.
The High court is dealing with a Habeas corpus plea of a Ukrainian woman Snizhana Gupta, alleging that her 3-year-old son has been brought to India by her ex-husband who is the father of the child.
The division bench of justices Sidharth Mridul and Talwant Singh directed the mother to meet the child in the creche at the High Court only till 5 PM.
The bench also directed Akhilesh Gupta, the father of the child, to permit the child to meet his biological mother and sister in the creche.
The bench requested the parties to remain present before the court during the hearing tomorrow.
The bench said that the interim arrangements between the parties shall continue till further order.
To be clear Akhilesh Gupta shall permit the child to interact with his mother and sister till 5 PM in the creche at the High Court.
Dr Sanju Gambhir, the child counsellor attached with the High court, is directed to remain present before the court tomorrow, the bench ordered.
The court rejected the necessity of attending the hearing by the official from the Ukrainian government.
"We do not want anyone from the Ukrainian government in the hearing as counsel and interpreter are there," the court said.
During the hearing, the interpreter Lydia for the petitioner submitted that she is from Ukraine to take the child back. "He has been taken here unauthorisedly by the respondent," Lydia said.

The bench said that for the court, the welfare of the child is most important. Interpersonal relationships between the parties are not concerned with the court, the bench said.
"Our concern is to secure the welfare of the child. We understand the sentiments. We examine this case from the standpoint of the child. You will get the opportunity, this is not the time right now. Once we have report, we will analyse where the child's welfare lies," the bench said.
Earlier, the interpreter submitted that custody of the child was granted to the petitioner.
The court asked, "Was that order passed Ex parte?" The counsel for the petitioner said that during the early hearing the father had appeared but later he did not.
Delhi High Court on November 14 was informed that the Delhi Police has traced the ex-husband of a Ukrainian woman and her 3-year-old son.
Earlier, the mother was connected on video conferencing through an interpreter and asked about the well-being of her son. The court had said the child was fine.
The High Court on November 2 issued notice to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of External Affairs and Delhi police on a habeas corpus plea moved by a Ukrainian woman to locate her 3-year-old son.
The woman has claimed that the child was illegally brought to India by her ex-husband who is the father of the child in March during the Russia-Ukraine War. The bench had directed Delhi Police to locate the man and his son.
The woman approached the court filing a plea through advocate Sravan Kumar.
The petitioner had told the bench that she is a divorcee and the custody of her son was granted to her in 2021 by a Ukrainian Court. The man took their son away without informing her on the basis of fabricated documents.
The bench had asked further, "Can you give us a guarantee that presently any area in Ukraine is safe... Is she certain that her ex-husband and child are in India," to which the woman's translator had replied that she was completely sure that the kid is in the territory of India.
The woman also claimed that her ex-husband kidnapped her son on March 23 when he took the child for a walk and did not return. A criminal case has been lodged in Ukraine in this regard.
She also claimed that the child is a Ukrainian citizen. How can travel documents be provided to him to enter India without obtaining her consent? It shows that the man brought her son to India on the basis of fabricated documents. (ANI)