Failure to file affidavits in police reforms case

Taking a serious view of the failure of the Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh governments to file their response in the ‘Police reforms case’ despite several reminders, the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the Chief Secretaries to be present in court on July 31 to explain the lapse.

The order was passed by a Bench of Justices G.S. Singhvi and V. Gopala Gowda in the case in which a Dalit girl and her father were beaten up in Punjab, and some women teachers were assaulted in Patna during an agitation. The court took suo motu cognisance of newspaper reports on the two incidents. Later the Bench expanded the scope of the case to include monitoring implementation of the 2006 judgment on police reforms.

The court earlier asked all States to file status reports on the implementation of the judgment. On Tuesday the Bench was told that the four States were yet to file their affidavits.

“We have to adjourn the case every time because one or the other State did not file affidavits. Now we are fed up. Advocates for the States concerned also take up this issue very casually. Unless some officers are convicted under the Contempt of Courts Act, things will not improve. We are pained to call these Chief Secretaries but there is no other option,” the Bench said.

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