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Take immediate action against accused Pilibhit cops: Allahabad HC to Uttar Pradesh

A Bench of Justices Surya Prakash Kesarwani and Piyush Agrawal instructed the government to ensure a “fair investigation” into the FIR and counter FIR filed in connection with the incident.

Written by Asad Rehman | Lucknow |
October 2, 2021 4:38:43 am
Allahabad High Court, Allahabad HCThe Allahabad High Court. (File photo)

Hearing a former Army man’s petition accusing a few policemen in Pilibhit of torturing and humiliating him earlier this year, the Allahabad High Court on Friday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to “take immediate action in accordance with law against the accused policemen”.

A Bench of Justices Surya Prakash Kesarwani and Piyush Agrawal instructed the government to ensure a “fair investigation” into the FIR and counter FIR filed in connection with the incident. The court also directed the government to conclude the investigation and departmental proceedings against the accused policemen “expeditiously, preferably within three months”.

The court pointed out that the report of the preliminary inquiry ordered by the Superintendent of Police had not yet been submitted “even after three months”.

The court said it was “only after video of the incident” went “viral on social media and a representation” was submitted by the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee through its President before the Ministry of Home Affairs, New Delhi, the Superintendent of Police Pilibhit took some action.

In its 21-page order, the Bench observed, “The servants of the government are also the servants of the people and the use of their power must always be subordinate to their duty of service. A public functionary if he acts maliciously or oppressively and the exercise of power results in harassment and agony then it is not an exercise of power but its abuse. No law provides protection against it.”

The court also said that the harassment of a common man by public authorities was “socially abhorring and legally impermissible”.

In his petition, former Army man Resham Singh (41) said that on May 3 his vehicle was stopped at a checkpoint in Pilibhit while he was travelling with his mother and two sisters. He claimed that the vehicle was stopped by sub-inspector Ram Naresh Singh, sub-inspector Raees Ahmad, and five to six constables.

Singh alleged that after beating him and his family members, the police officials took them to the Puranpur police station without the assistance of any woman police official. In the station, he was allegedly stripped, tied to a cot, and “brutally beaten” for two hours. The petition also alleged that a lathi was inserted “inside the petitioner’s anus/rectum”. Singh also alleged that the policemen removed his turban.

The former Army man and his family were booked in an FIR, among other things, under IPC sections for disobedience of an order duly promulgated by a public servant, assault or criminal force to deter a public servant from discharging his duty.

Advocate General (AG) Raghvendra Singh, arguing on behalf of the state government, submitted that submitted that a “fair investigation is going on” and an SIT had been constituted. He also said that the petitioner “is trying to create pressure upon the investigating agency” and that “such a person should not be granted any relief”.

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