The Bombay High Court on Wednesday directed the Maharashtra government and police to file an affidavit with details of private persons who have been given police protection, duration of the security cover, and payments of charges and arrears.
A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice M S Sonak expressed displeasure with the approach of the state government and police to the issue and said no step has been taken to recover the arrears.
The bench was hearing a bunch of PILs claiming private persons who have been given police protection do not pay the requisite money to the government and the authority also has not taken any step to recover the same.
“On one side the government is crying about financial crunch and on the other side you (government) are not bothered about recovering arrears which is running up to crores (of rupees). What is the Director General of Police and the Commissioner of Police doing? Are they sleeping?” Chief Justice Chellur said.
“People these days consider having police protection as status symbol. If they want this status symbol then they should pay for it too,” the court said.
The bench noted that the issue raised was serious and directed a senior police officer to file affidavit.
“We want a list of all those persons who have been given police protection. Against each name, the affidavit shall mention since when protection has been given, how much money has been paid and how much money is pending and how much money has been recovered,” the court directed.
The bench has posted the petitions for further hearing on December 16.