The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday directed the police authorities in the state to take apposite legal action against a man who was accused of abusing a Safai Karmchari and threatening to harm her family.
The bench comprising of Justices Anil Kumar and Manish Mathur has asked the Superintendent of Police of the concerned district to act on the FIR and take action in compliance with the law laid down by the Supreme Court in Lalita Kumari v. Government of UP & Ors., (2014) 2 Supreme Court 1.
"After hearing learned counsel for the parties and going through the record as well as taking into consideration the law laid down by Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Lalita Kumari v. Government of Uttar Pradesh and others reported in (2014) 2 SCC 1, we hereby direct the petitioner to approach Superintendent of Police, District Hardoi-opposite party no.3 with respect to the grievance which she has raised in the present writ petition and thereafter opposite party no.3 shall take appropriate steps in the matter in question as per law laid down by Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Lalita Kumari (supra)," the order states.
In the said case, the Top Court had issued guidelines for registration of FIR and subsequent investigation. It was held that registration of First Information Report is mandatory under Section 154 of CrPC, if the information discloses commission of a cognizable offence and no preliminary inquiry is permissible in such a situation.
The present case was filed by one Meera Devi, a widow lady belonging to the Scheduled Caste community, who worked as a Safai Karmchari in the Hardoi District of UP.
It was alleged that while the Petitioner and her co-workers were performing their duties as Safai Karmcharis, the accused, Devraj, came and started abusing them and when the Petitioner tried to make a video of the incident, he broke her mobile phone. Subsequently, he threatened her not to broadcast the incident or else he will harm her and her family.
The Petitioner had approached the High Court stating that even though an FIR was registered against the accused under the relevant provisions of IPC and the SC/ST Act, the Police authorities were not acting on the same.
As a result of such lackadaisical approach it is alleged, the accused continues to flout free and threaten the Petitioner and her family to withdraw the case.
"Even after passing of about one month of lodging the FIR, not any action against accused which shows that the Police Officials are not showing any interest in the case and they are helping the accused person because of which the petitioner is suffering," the Petitioner submitted.
It is also contended that the SC/ST Act provides for "immediate arrest" of the accused but despite the aforesaid clear provision, the Police authorities are non-compliant, and the same has ultimately resulted in violation of the Petitioner's right to life with dignity.
The matter was disposed of with a direction to the Police to act in compliance with the Guidelines for registration of FIR and investigation.
Case Title: Meera Devi v. State of UP & Ors.
Case No.: Misc. Bench No. 8402/2020
Quorum: Justices Anil Kumar and Manish Mathur
Appearance: Advocate Mohit Mishra (for Petitioner)
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