Questioning the “partisan stand”of Uttar Pradesh government, the Allahabad High Court has sought records from the Legal Remembrancer of the state about total number of applications filed for withdrawing cases against persons belonging to a particular class filed by it in the last two years and also the circumstances in which they have been filed.
The order came while hearing a petition by a person, charged with criminal breach of trust, seeking expeditious disposal of his application for withdrawal of the criminal case registered against him. The court will take up the matter on Thursday (May 7) for hearing.
A division bench of Justices Sudhir Agarwal and Dinesh Gupta passed the order on May 4 on the petition filed by Ram Narain Yadav, a resident of Ballia district.
Yadav, through his counsel D K Prasad, had prayed before the HC to direct the lower court for either taking a decision on the application for withdrawal of case against him or conclude the trial within a stipulated time.
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Taking note of Yadav’s petition, the court said: “It has come to notice of this Court that despite the fact that the investigating officer has found evidence against the accused…and has submitted chargesheet in the court below…still the state government, at the stage of trial, has taken a decision to withdraw the case showing clear cut prima facie partisan stand in favour of the accused and that, too, without taking into confidence the complainant”
“We are also informed that a large number of such decisions have been taken in a rampant indiscreet manner and the cases are being withdrawn against a particular class of persons throughout the state. Let Legal Remembrancer appear before this court along with relevant record to show as to in what circumstances the decision was taken to withdraw the case when trial is pending. He shall also file an affidavit placing on record as to in how many matters, in the last two years, such decisions have been taken and what are the considerations on which such decisions have been taken,” the bench further said.
Earlier, the FIR against Yadav was registered under Section 379 (theft) of the Indian Penal Code at Bansdih Road police station in Ballia on a complaint case filed in the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate under Section 156 (3) of the CrPC in 2009. The prime allegation against him was that he had forcibly taken away a jeep belonging to the complainant, even though the latter had refused to give him the same.
Giving details of the case, Yadav’s counsel D K Prasad said that following investigations, the case was converted under Section 406 (criminal breach of trust) of the IPC and a chargesheet was filed on January 20, 2010. “In due course, the prosecution generated a report that the case should be withdrawn, as it would not be able to sustain trial, and sent it to the state administration. The administration gave the assent and an application for withdrawal was filed on February 10, 2014,” he said adding that the court issued notice to the complainant on March 31, 2014.
“The complainant appeared before the court and submitted that he would file an objection to the case withdrawal application. For this, he was given time. The last he appeared before the court was on April 14, 2014. Since then, the case has remained stuck. Our prayer was that the same should be decided either ways or the trial concluded within a stipulated time period,” Prasad added.