Maharashtra Police cannot become private guards, the Bombay High Court today said and directed the state government to review each and every case in which police protection has been given.
A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice N M Jamdar said the department concerned should revisit each and every case and see if protection is still required. “Protection given 10 to 15 years ago when there must have been a threat, should be reviewed. Is security required? After so many years, circumstances would have changed,” the court said, adding that the state police cannot become private guards.
“Maharashtra Police is not meant for all this. Protection must be given in rarest of rare cases. Not as a matter of giving it for the sake of it. For normal cases, there are private firms. You (police) cannot become private guards,” Justice Chellur said. “Why should the public exchequer’s money be wasted on people who do not deserve protection? And people who can afford must pay,” she said.
The court added that in many cases protection is given without proper application of mind. “There has to be some methodology. There cannot be madness in the method,” the court said.
The bench was hearing a public interest litigation filed by city resident Sunny Punamiya seeking direction to the state police to recover dues from the VIPs, including politicians, who have been provided security cover, but have not paid till date.
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