27 March 2022 5:32 AM GMT
The Allahabad High Court has asked the Additional Chief Secretary in the Uttar Pradesh Government to file his personal affidavit disclosing the steps taken by the State pursuant to the submission of a judicial inquiry report in the Bulandshahr Custodial Death case.The Bench of Justice Ashwani Kumar Mishra and Justice Rajnish Kumar ordered thus as it noted that in the judicial inquiry report,...
The Allahabad High Court has asked the Additional Chief Secretary in the Uttar Pradesh Government to file his personal affidavit disclosing the steps taken by the State pursuant to the submission of a judicial inquiry report in the Bulandshahr Custodial Death case.
The Bench of Justice Ashwani Kumar Mishra and Justice Rajnish Kumar ordered thus as it noted that in the judicial inquiry report, it had clearly been found that the victim had died in the police custody and the police personnel were responsible for it.
It may be noted that the mother of the custodial death victim has moved the High Court with a prayer to protect the life and liberty of the petitioners, submitting that their son/victim was subjected to torture and murder, as he had contracted inter-caste marriage out of his own free will.
Haering the matter on January 7, the High Court had observed that in such matters, where the allegation is with regard to custodial death, judicial inquiry u/s 176 (1)A CrPC can't be allowed to be dragged for long as these are instances that have to be viewed with the greatest sensitivity and concern.
The Court had also called for the Judicial Inquiry report in the matter, now, on March 25, the Court perused the report and found that the report had been forwarded to the Additional Chief Secretary, Home, by the District Magistrate on Jan 18, 2022, however, the Court noted that no action had been taken upon it.
In view of this, the Court, at the outset, stressed that Custodial death is a serious matter, particularly when the allegations are found true in the judicial inquiry and police personnel responsible for the death of the victim. The Court also noted that no post-mortem was conducted and the body was cremated by police personnel.
"In matters of this kind we expect the higher officers to be sensitive to the deprivation of liberty and to immediately proceed to take appropriate action, as is warranted in law. We are not convinced with the version of the State that it is a case of suicide by the victim, as the judicial inquiry has come to a different conclusion. An appropriate report ought to have been lodged under Section 154 and investigation ought to have progressed. Claim for payment of compensation also ought to have been considered," the Court further remarked.
Against this backdrop, the Court sought a personal affidavit of the Additional Chief Secretary of the Department of Home by April 19, disclosing the steps taken by the State in light of the Judicial Inquiry report. Significantly, the Court has also called for an explanation over the action taken against the responsible officers in the matter.
With this, the matter has now been listed for further hearing on April 19.
Case title - Suresh Devi And Another v. State Of U.P. And 13 Others
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