A second-year LLB student, caught at a police nakabandi in Wadala for not wearing a mask, was booked for “spying” under the Official Secrets Act after he tried to videograph the police station on his mobile phone, police said.
Constable Shantaram Khade, a complainant in the case, in his statement to police, said a blockade had been put up at Wadala bridge to check traffic violators and those driving without a mask on September 17. Around 4 pm, one Mukesh Singh (31), who was riding a motorcycle with Manoj Shukla (30) as pillion, was stopped at the nakabandi for not wearing a face mask. Singh was also found driving without a licence on him, police said.
Singh allegedly misbehaved with the on-duty police personnel at the nakabandi and was taken to Wadala police station for registration of a case on charges of flouting lockdown norms, police said. At the Wadala police station, police added, Singh tried to videograph the station house and the police personnel on his mobile phone.
Senior Inspector Shahaji Shinde of Wadala police station said as Singh was caught shooting a video, his cell phone was seized and a section of Official Secrets Act was added to the FIR. “Only Singh has been booked for spying and not his pillion rider,” Shinde said. He added that police have “no idea why and what Singh was video recording”. Singh’s cell phone has been seized for investigation, the officer said.
Singh has been booked under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 269 (negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) and 270 (malignant act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) of the Indian Penal Code, section 3 (penalties for spying) of the Official Secrets Act, 1923, and sections 3 and 181 of the Motor Vehicle Act.
“We have verified his residential address and are certain that he will not escape. So, for now, we have served him notice and let him go,” Shinde said.
A resident of Bhimwadi area in Wadala (East), Singh on Sunday said he was yet to get a copy of the FIR. “I have filed an application at the police station requesting them to hand over a copy of the FIR to me. Once I get that I will be in a position to comment,” he said.
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