6 April 2023 8:00 AM GMT
The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday directed the State to produce before it all records and documents including post mortem report, ballistics report etc., in a PIL related to killing of a person and his 14 year old son in a police encounter in Patdi taluka of Surendranagar district in the year 2021.The PIL filed by the daughter and sister of the deceased persons respectively, states that...
The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday directed the State to produce before it all records and documents including post mortem report, ballistics report etc., in a PIL related to killing of a person and his 14 year old son in a police encounter in Patdi taluka of Surendranagar district in the year 2021.
The PIL filed by the daughter and sister of the deceased persons respectively, states that on November 6, 2021, at around 7-8 p.m., one Police Sub Inspector (Respondent no. 4) and other Police officers (Respondents no. 6 to 11) came to the house of the petitioner in a private vehicle and dragged the father of the petitioner and put him in the vehicle that they had brought in.
It was further stated that looking to the atrocity, the 14 year old brother of the petitioner went to ask the reasoning where he was shot point blank by the respondent no. 5 in the chest due to which he died. The father of the petitioner rushed to see his son and he was also shot dead, it is alleged.
It was alleged by the petitioner the deceased persons were killed in cold blooded murders by the police authorities. It was further stated that there were many offences registered against the deceased father (Hanifkhan) of the petitioner but the same would not give an automatic license to the police officials to carry out the alleged fake encounter.
The petition further highlighted that a FIR was filed by the police authorities under Section 307 of IPC on November 7, 2021 against the deceased persons and their family alleging that a mob of 15-20 people attacked with weapons and had inflicted blows haphazardly on the police officials when the police tried to put Hanifkhan in the car.
In the said FIR, it was stated that police fired on the deceased persons in self-defence as the deceased persons and mob tried to attack the police.
The petitioner made the following prayers before the Court:
While hearing the PIL, the Acting Chief Justice (ACJ) A. J. Desai asked the counsel appearing for the State, “What has been done? Has any FIR been registered against anybody?”
The Counsel submitted that a Magisterial Enquiry has been conducted by JMFC under Section 176 of CrPC and the report has been submitted to the State Human Rights Commission which is under consideration by the Commission.
"What is there in the report?" the ACJ asked. The Counsel responded that the report was sent in a sealed cover and the State has not had any access to the said report.
However, Counsel appearing for the petitioner argued that the report was in pursuant to directions issued by the State Human Rights Commission in suo moto cognizance of the matter. It was further submitted that the police authorities claimed that several police men were injured during the incident but no medical certificate has been produced for the said injuries.
ACJ asked whether any action has been taken against any police personnel, to which the State’s Counsel replied in the negative.
It was further informed by the State’s Counsel that weapons have been recovered in relation to the incident.
It was contended by the Counsel for the State that PIL was filed by victim with regard to her personal grievance and petition does not show how the same is in public interest.
The court then directed to call all the papers with regard to the incident and weapons.
“The respondent State is directed to provide all the papers with regard to the incident for the perusal of the court including medical paper of the injured and deceased persons as well as the any report from the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL).”
The matter is again listed on April 19.
Case Title: Sohanaben Hanifkhan Malek v. The State of Gujarat & Ors.
Coram: The Acting Chief Justice A. J. Desai and Justice Biren Vaishnav
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