Court pulls up Delhi Police for ‘avoidable’ arrest of retired public servant

Delhi(PTI): A court has pulled up Delhi Police for arresting a retired public servant in connection with a motorbike theft case, saying the move was not only “avoidable” but a matter of serious concern that cops do not hesitate to curtail liberties of citizens.

The court, while expressing anguish that the police personnel were not even aware of the law and ignored the guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court on arrest, also said that apparently the process of law has been “abused and subverted” for some ulterior purpose.

“It is a matter of serious concern and I shudder to think that we are trusting the lives and liberties of citizens of this country in the hands of these officials, who as per the official claims, are hardly matriculate and are not even aware of the statutory law,” Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau said.

They “do not hesitate once while curtailing liberties of citizens despite repeated national outrage and directions to the contrary,” she observed while confirming the bail granted earlier to retired government servant Devender Kumar who was arrested in a motorcycle theft case.

The court also said that arrest in the case was “clearly avoidable and hurriedly” made while ignoring the laid down guidelines.

“I fail to understand the justification or the imminent requirement of his (Kumar’s) arrest. Rather, there appears to be something more which meets the eye and apparently the process of law has been abused and subverted for some ulterior purpose,” the judge said.

The court, in its order, noted that during the hearing, senior police officials and public prosecutor had said that the investigating officer, a head constable, was hardly 10th pass and was not aware about the guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court.

The court observed that the police case diary did not contain the grounds which could justify the arrest of the man in the case and there was a question mark regarding the correctness of allegations levelled against the accused.

It noted in its order that Deputy Commissioner of Police (Outer), who also appeared before the court, had submitted that an explanation has already been sought from the “erring officers” and departmental action shall be initiated against them in accordance with law.

The DCP also informed the court that the case would be transferred to some other officer in another sub-division to rule out allegations of bias at a later stage.

The court said the copy of its order be placed before the concerned magistrate with the direction to ensure that in all cases where remand is given on the request of investigating officer, there is a strict judicial scrutiny of the reasons given by the police officer for arresting an accused.