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Calcutta HC says time to bifurcate police since investigations suffer

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The Calcutta High Court has observed that it is high time police reforms are introduced in West Bengal to bifurcate the law and order wing from the investigating arm.

The bench of Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Arijit Banerjee said this on Thursday while hearing the case of a missing girl.

A report has been filed by the Inspector-in-Charge of Arambagh Police Station but there is no indication therein as to the whereabouts of the missing girl.

The state’s submitted that its investigating agency was close to discovering where the missing girl may be and sought further time.

“It is high time that police reforms are introduced in this state to bifurcate the law and order wing from the investigating wing. Criminal cases suffer because of lack of adequate investigation and lack of adequate material being produced. Though maintaining law and order is an important part of police duty, the investigating arm cannot be compromised,” the Court said.

The Bench directed that copies of this order should be reached to the Chief Secretary and the Home Secretary of the State for appropriate measures to be taken in terms of the Supreme Court dictum in Prakash Singh v. Union of India [(2006) 8 SCC 1] and the police reforms that remain outstanding for more than a decade after such pronouncement.

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The Court has further directed that the Superintendent of Police, Hooghly, should file a report when the matter appears next on December 21, 2020.

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