8 Nov 2022 2:30 PM GMT
The Bombay High Court recently expressed 'shock' and 'surprise' that the police registered a case against 9-year-old child for accidentally hitting a lady while riding a bicycle despite the exception provided in section 83 of the IPC. "The action reflects complete non-application of mind by the concerned officer whilst registering the offence", the bench of Justice Revati Mohite Dere...
The Bombay High Court recently expressed 'shock' and 'surprise' that the police registered a case against 9-year-old child for accidentally hitting a lady while riding a bicycle despite the exception provided in section 83 of the IPC.
"The action reflects complete non-application of mind by the concerned officer whilst registering the offence", the bench of Justice Revati Mohite Dere and Justice S. M. Modak stated in its order.
Section 83 provides that nothing is an offence if done by a child between 7 to 12 years of age who has not attained sufficient maturity to understand the nature and consequences of his actions on that occasion.
The mother of the child filed the petition for quashing of the FIR registered for offence under section 338 of the IPC (Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and the proceeding pending before the Metropolitan Magistrate.
Advocate Shravan Giri for the Petitioner said that the petitioner's son is 9 years old. Hence, no FIR could be registered by the police due to section 83 of the IPC. The boy has been traumatised from the media coverage of the incident which was clearly an accident.
APP J. P. Yagnik for the State did not object to quashing of the FIR. He further told the court that action has been initiated against Assistant Commissioner of Police who registered the FIR.
According to the complainant, the petitioner's minor son lost his balance while cycling and hit her mother due to which her mother got injured.
The court said that the facts clearly reveal that the incident was an accident. The court noted that even before investigation 'C' summary report was filed in the case but there was a lot of damage to the boy due to the publicity given to the case.
The Police Sub-Inspector attached to the police station stated in his affidavit that the FIR was registered due to misconception of law. He did not intend to register an FIR against a minor child. He further stated that he prepared the report under section 2(45) of the Juvenile Justice Act (petty offences) but did not take any coercive action against the child. He also tendered an unconditional apology for registering the FIR.
The court was informed that the 'C' summary report was submitted to the Juvenile Court but no order has been passed despite directions by the High Court.
"Misconception or ignorance of law is not an excuse, much less, for a police officer and in the peculiar facts, more so, having regard to the fact that the child was only 9 years of age. This action of the police i.e., of registration of FIR, has resulted in traumatizing a 9-year-old boy", the court said.
The court quashed the FIR and the proceeding pending against the minor boy.
The court also expressed displeasure at the Metropolitan Magistrate who did not take up the matter despite orders passed by the High Court. The court awarded cost of Rs. 25,000 to the petitioner to be paid by the state government. The court directed the state government to recover the cost from the officers responsible for this lapse.
Case no. – Criminal Writ Petition No. 3062 of 2022
Case title – 'AK' v. State of Maharashtra and Ors.
Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Bom) 430
Click Here To Read/Download Order