The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Monday (09th November) asked the Directors-General of Police (DGP) of Punjab, Haryana and UT Chandigarh to specify as to whether the surveillance registers are being continuously reviewed.
The Bench of Justice Amol Rattan Singh was hearing the plea of One Jaswinder Singh who submitted before the Court that he was acquitted in 2 criminal cases registered against him in the year 1989, i.e. more than 30 years ago; however, his name still appears in the surveillance register showing him to be a bad character.
His counsel drew the Court's attention to the list of bad characters listed in the surveillance register maintained in the police station, as is shown to have been displayed in Police Station Rawalpindi, District Kapurthala, wherein, the name of the petitioner appears at sr. no.4 of the list "BC-B".
Court's 2005 Direction
It may be noted that in the year 2005, a Division Bench of Punjab & Haryana High Court in the case of Musa Khan v. State of Punjab and others 2005(1) RCR (criminal) 960, had stated that:-
"12. Before parting with the judgment, we direct that a copy of the same be sent to the Director Generals of Police, Punjab and Haryana and Inspector General of Police, Union of Territory, Chandigarh, who in turn would forward the same to the District Police Chiefs with a direction to re-examine the Surveillance Registers maintained in the Police Stations of the process, it is hoped, would be completed within two months."
In view of the 2005 Direction, the DGPs of Punjab, Haryana and the U.T. Chandigarh, have been asked to state as to "whether the aforesaid direction issued by the Division Bench 15 years ago, has been complied with or not; and whether the surveillance registers are being continuously reviewed for that purpose or not."
Also, the SSP, Kapurthala, has been directed to file his/her own affidavit in response to the petition, "stating therein specifically as to why, in view of what has been contended hereinabove, the petitioners' name continues to remain in the surveillance register as a bad character."
Case title - Jaswinder Singh v. State of Punjab and others [CRM-M-36564 of 2020]