Any person who is under illegal detention by an officer of the State Government shall be paid compensation by the State Government.
- Briefly stated, the facts of the present case are that there was some dispute relating to ancestral property between the petitioners and their family members. Some tiff arose between the petitioners and other family members, regarding the partition of ancestral land and in the apprehension of breach of the public peace, the police arrested the petitioners under Section 151 Cr.P.C.
- On 08.10.2020. A Challani Report dated 08.10.2020 was submitted by the Sub Inspector, Police Station Rohania, District Varanasi to the Sub Divisional Magistrate, District Varanasi under Section 151/107/116 Cr.P.C., which was in printed form and merely name of the petitioners and others, name of the village and “land dispute” have been filled by ink in the aforesaid Challani Report. On receipt of the Challani Report, the Sub Divisional Magistrate registered the case as Case No.624 of 2020 and passed the order on 08.10.2020:
- It appears that on 12.10.2020 the petitioners submitted personal bond and other papers but respondent no.3 has not released them and instead, under the pretext of verification, directed the file to be placed on 21.10.2020.
- Thereafter, on 21.10.2020 the petitioners were released. Aggrieved with the arbitrary and illegal action of the respondents and illegal detention, the petitioners have filed the present writ petition praying for the relief as afore-quoted.
Issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of mandamus directing the respondents to give compensation to the petitioners in lieu of illegal detention from 12.10.2020 to 21.10.2020 in connection with Case Crime No.624 of 2020, State vs. Shiv Kumar Verma and another, under Section 151, 107 and 116 Cr.P.C., Police Station Rohania, District Varanasi.
Discussion and Findings
- That Hon’ble Court considered the submissions of learned counsels for the parties. The action was taken by the State Government.
- In the counter-affidavit dated 02.02.2021, respondent no.1 has stated that the State Government has taken corrective action in the matter vide letters/circulars dated 30th January 2021 and 31st January 2021. The aforesaid letters/circulars dated 30th January 2021 and 31st January 2021.
- In compliance to the afore-quoted Government Order dated 30.01.2021, the Director-General of Police, Uttar Pradesh has issued a Circular, dated 31.01.2021 to all the Zonal Additional Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh, and all the Police Commissioners, Uttar Pradesh and directed them to ensure strict compliance of the afore-quoted Government order.
- From the facts briefly noted above and the counter affidavit of respondent no.1, it stands admitted that the police authorities are arbitrarily and illegally submitting Challani Reports under Sections 107/116 Cr.P.C. Since respondent no.1 has taken steps to correct the mistakes and illegalities, therefore, we do not propose to issue any further direction in that regard, except that the afore-quoted Circulars dated 30th January 2021 and 31st January 2021 shall be strictly implemented in the whole of the State of Uttar Pradesh.
- In the counter-affidavit dated 01.02.2021, respondent no.3 has stated in paragraph 5 and 8 that “the petitioners submitted the applications through their counsel that they are ready to furnish personal bonds as well as bail bonds, therefore, they may be released on bail and the answering respondent directed the concerned Tehsildar to verify the revenue records produced by the sureties and on verification, the petitioners shall be released on 21.10.2020 on bail.
- In his counter-affidavit, respondent no.3 has tried to justify his arbitrary action and a clear breach of statutory duty cast upon him as well as the fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India. In this regard, it would be appropriate to refer to the provisions of Sections 107, 111, and 116 of the Code of the Criminal Procedure, 1973, which are reproduced below:
- It would further be relevant to note that admittedly the petitioners have submitted personal bond on 12.10.2020 although the order passed by respondent no.3 dated 08.10.2020 does not specify the substance of the information received, the amount of the bond to be executed, the term for which it is to be in force, and the number, character, and class of sureties, if any, required. Despite the submission of personal bond and other papers on 12.10.2020 by the petitioners before respondent no.3, they were not released by respondent no.3, and that too against his own order dated 08.10.2020 that the petitioners shall be detained till the presentation of personal bond/bail bond. Non-release of the petitioners by respondent no.3 even after submission of personal bond/bail bond and other papers, is a clear breach of Article 21 of the Constitution of India, by respondent no.3 which resulted in illegal detention of the petitioners at least since 12.10.2020 to 21.10.2020.
- On 02.02.2021 this Court noted the statement made by the State Government in Paragraph 15 of the order dated 02.02.2021 as under:
- Learned Additional Advocate General and the Secretary, Home, U.P. Lucknow jointly state that the State Government shall develop a mechanism and shall also issue appropriate guidelines so as to ensure that such instances may not repeat again. They further state that the State Government shall consider granting monetary compensation to the petitioners for breach of their fundamental rights under Article 21 of the Constitution of India.”
- In pursuance of the statement made on own behalf of the State government as noted in the afore quoted paragraph 15 of the order dated 02.02.2021, the State Government filed an affidavit of compliance dated 24.03.2021 of Sri Tarun Gauba, Secretary, Home Affairs, Uttar Pradesh, in which in paragraph 10 it has been stated as under
- “That it is most respectfully submitted that the State Government has issued directions to all District Magistrates and all Executive and Special Magistrates who are subordinate to the District Magistrates, to exercise their power under Section 107, 116 Cr.P.C. for maintenance of public peace and public tranquility in their territorial jurisdiction. They have been further advised that each and every case under the aforesaid proceedings shall be decided on its own merit with the application of judicial mind and in accordance with the established law & procedure to ensure that the fundamental rights of citizens are protected. The State Government has directed all the District Magistrates of the State to ensure strict compliance of the policy/guideline dated 23rd March 2021. The State Government has reformulated the earlier policy dated 02.03.2021 and after including the aforementioned issues it has re-issued policy/guideline dated 23rd March 2021. For kind perusal of this Hon’ble Court copy of policy/guideline dated 23rd March 2021 is being filed herewith and marked as Annexure-1 to this affidavit.”
- The policy of the State Government dated 23.03.2021 appended as Annexure 1 to the aforesaid affidavit of compliance dated 24.03.2021.
Action by the State Government
- We record our appreciation for the State Government to take the afore quoted policy decision dated 23.03.2021 for payment of compensation of Rs.25,000/- for illegal detention of any citizen by any Officer of the State Government and initiation of disciplinary proceedings against such officer. Since the State Government itself has taken a policy decision and has paid compensation to the petitioners herein, therefore, no further direction for payment of compensation is required to be issued in the present writ petition.
- In view of the aforesaid, this writ petition is disposed of with the following directions:-
- The State Government shall ensure that the provisions of the Cr.P.C. as referred in the policy decision dated 23.03.2021 are strictly followed/observed by all the concerned officers.
- The State Government shall further ensure that paragraph 12 of the policy decision dated 23.03.2021 is strictly implemented.
- The State Government shall publish Para 12 of its Policy decision dated 23.03.2021 in all largely circulated National Level newspaper having circulation in the State of Uttar Pradesh and shall also display it on display board at prominent places within public view, in all blocks, Tehsil Headquarters, Police Stations and in the campus of District Collectorate in the whole of the State of Uttar Pradesh.
- Copy of this order shall be sent by the State Government to all District level and Tehsil level Bar Associations in the whole of the State of Uttar Pradesh.
- Let a copy of this order be sent by the Registrar General of this Court to the Chief Secretary of the State of Uttar Pradesh and the Additional Chief Secretary, Home, for strict compliance.
Order Date:- 11.06.2021
Shiv Kumar Verma and Another vs State Of U.P. and 3 Others
Hon’ble Surya Prakash Kesarwani,J.
Hon’ble Shamim Ahmed,J.
CRIMINAL MISC. WRIT PETITION No. – 16386 of 2020