Hours after a habeas corpus petition was filed before the Supreme Court seeking release of an IPS officer from Bihar who was quarantined by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the BMC has issued an order for his release.
BMC has exempted IPS officer Vinay Tiwari from home quarantine, to facilitate his return to Patna and to resume his duties. Tiwari is the lead officer appointed by the Bihar Government to investigate the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput.
In the backdrop, a FIR was lodged at Rajiv Nagar Police Thana in Patna by Rajput's father, against actress Rhea Chakraborty under Sections 306, 341, 342, 380, 406 and 420 of IPC. In pursuance of the said FIR a SIT of 4-officers went to Maharashtra for investigation on Monday, 27th July, 2020.
Further, under directions of the Bihar Police, Tiwari reached Mumbai on August 2, in order to lead and co-ordinate with the investigation. However, he was alleged to have been "forcibly quarantined" by the local authorities.
The Petitioner, Nalin N. Mishra, claiming to be a social activist based in Bihar, had approached the Supreme Court alleging that quarantine of Mr. Vinay Tiwari is without any legal sanction and in derogation to the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Civil Aviation and State of Maharashtra wherein it provides that if the passenger is returning within 7 days of his arrival, there shall be no quarantine.
"The detainee IPS officer who reached Mumbai in pursuance of lawful discharge and execution of his official duty in connection to a case assigned to him and as such, the detaining authority ought to have granted him exemption or given a statement of reasons for the rejection of the same when a request for grant of exception was made by the DGP of Bihar Police to the detaining authority which was rejected," she had averred.
It was contended through Advocates Rajesh Inamdar, Shashawat Anand,Mithu Jain and Ankur Azad that the detention and alleged quarantine (virtual house arrest) of an on-duty IPS officer by the BMC is ultra vires and violative of Fundamental Rights under Articles 14 & 19 as the guidelines of 14-Day Quarantine is not applicable to him.
Further it was contended that Tiwari was not even permitted to return to Bihar and as such his Fundamental Rights under Articles 20, 21 and 22 were violated.
"Even if an exception could not have been made for the detainee, the detaining authority must have allowed him to go back to Patna as under the scheme of quarantine laid down in the guidelines and as such his forceful alleged quarantine amounts to illegal house arrest and unlawful detention," the plea stated.
Now, with the BMC permitting Tiwari's release, the plea seems to have become infructuous.
In related developments, the Central Government has accepted the Bihar Government's recommendation for a CBI probe into the actor's death. Further, the Top Court refused to grant a stay in the Bollywood actress Rhea Chakraborty's plea seeking transfer of the abovementioned FIR from Patna to Mumbai, and the stay on the investigation by the Bihar police.
That apart, a petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking to unearth the alleged connection between the deaths of Rajput and his former Manager, Disha Saliyan.
Click Here To Download Petition