Tamil Nadu

It’s a shame that two top police officials are facing criminal case, says HC judge

It is a “shame” that a special Director General of Police (since suspended) has been accused of making sexual advances towards a woman Indian Police Service (IPS) officer and a Superintendent of Police (also under suspension now) has been charged with waylaying her when she was on the way to lodge a complaint, said Justice P. Velmurugan of the Madras High Court on Wednesday.

The judge made the oral observation during the hearing of a criminal revision petition filed by the suspended SP D. Kannan against the refusal of a Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) in Villupuram to discharge him from the criminal case. He said if women IPS officers could face such an affront to their dignity, less said was better about the plight of women police personnel in lower ranks.

The judge asked how the common man would have faith in the police department if high-level officers were accused of lowly acts. He said the department was “highly polluted.” People approach police with great expectations but the investigation conducted in most of the cases under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act of 2012 was not upto the mark, he lamented.

“Even now, I only wish and pray that the allegations (levelled against the two top police officials) remain to be allegations. I am not making any conclusions. Let things be decided in the trial... Let God save the department,” the judge said after expressing his disinclination to reverse the CJM’s order and discharge the suspended SP from the case without having to face trial.

The suspended SP had contended that he was unaware of the unsavoury events that had transpired between the suspended special DGP and the complainant and that he had only obeyed his superior’s orders by making her talk to him on the phone at Paranur toll plaza on the day of the incident. However, Justice Velmurugan said it could, at best, be a defence to be taken during trial.

After finding that his arguments could not cut ice with the judge, the petitioner’s counsel chose to withdraw the criminal revision petition. The judge permitted the withdrawal and issued a direction to the trial court to complete the trial proceedings within three months.

Subsequently, the judge heard another criminal revision petition filed by the suspended special DGP Rajesh Das challenging the CJM's jurisdiction to try the case and reserved orders.

In a related development, Justice C. Saravanan of the High Court on Wednesday directed a government counsel to take instructions by Friday to a writ petition filed by the suspended special DGP challenging the inquiry conducted by the Internal Complaints Committee constituted by the State government under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act of 2013.


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Printable version | Dec 3, 2021 11:01:54 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/its-a-shame-that-two-top-police-officials-are-facing-criminal-case-says-hc-judge/article37100517.ece

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