The Allahabad High Court has directed Vikram Sharma, who was a clerk of the Civil Court of Bulandshahr, to surrender in court within 24 hours.
The Division Bench of Justices Suneet Kumar and Om Prakash Tripathi passed this order while hearing a suo motu contempt application.
The Court observed that the order sheet reflects that on May 24, 2018 notice was issued to the contemnor on the Court being satisfied that the ingredients of criminal contempt, prima facie, is made out against the contemnor.
In this matter, on July 30, 2018, the contemnor, a clerk of the civil court, Bulandshahr, did not comply with the order, neither did he put in an appearance despite notice being served upon him. Consequently, a bailable warrant was issued against him.
The Court noted, “As is reflected from the order dated September 26, 2018, S.R. Verma, counsel put in appearance for the contemnor, and sought three weeks’ time to file reply.
Counsel/contemnor thereafter did not appear in the proceeding. Consequently, on January 16, 2019, non-bailable warrant was issued against the contemnor. Pursuant thereof, the contemnor was produced before the Court, he stated that he would contest the matter in person. Despite repeated requests, the contemnor did not file any reply though he was produced before the Court from the District Jail.
The contemnor was again produced before the Court on July 17, 2019 from the District Jail, Aligarh, in Case at Police Station Khurja Nagar, District Aligarh. He requested for further opportunity to file a reply and place the material/documents in his defence.”
The Court further noted that,
The Court again on October 23, 2020 directed the contemnor to appear and submit his reply to the show cause notice. In the order dated December 01, 2020, the counsel appearing for the contemnor informed the Court that contemnor was released on bail. On request, further six weeks’ time was granted to file an objection, if any, to the show cause notice. However, the contemnor did not comply. Consequently, a bailable warrant came to be issued on January 28, 2021.
Thereafter, an application was filed to recall the bailable warrant. The order sheet thereafter reflects that the counsel appearing for the contemnor was sending repeated illness slips. Again, non-bailable warrant came to be issued on November 25, 2021 against the contemnor.
The Court, in its order dated January 06, 2022, noted that the contemnor is not traceable at the residence and address given in the appeal.
In this backdrop, the contemnor has neither appeared before the Senior Superintendent of Police, Bulandshahar, nor surrendered before the concerned court. He submits that he is present in the office of his newly engaged counsel at New Delhi.
In other words, the above noted order has not been complied, contemnor is deliberately and willfully avoiding the Court proceedings, the Court said.
The Court directed that the contemnor (Vikram Sharma) shall surrender before the concerned court within 24 hours. Failing which, District Judge, Bulandshahr, is directed to adopt coercive measures against the contemnor, including proceedings under section 82/83 CrPC. The contemnor shall be taken in custody and produced before this Court on the date fixed.
The Court has fixed the next hearing of the petition on February 21, 2022.