The Delhi High Court has directed Commissioner of Police, Delhi to conduct an enquiry into the illegal detention of a 65-year-old man in the police station and file an action taken report
The Court’s direction came on a Habeas corpus plea filed by son alleging his father was called at Narela Police Station on February 17, and since then he hasn’t returned to home.
However, the SHO of the Police station refused the same, but when Court asked Kishan Kumar Khatri who was called at the police station through video conferencing, he told the Court that he has been illegally detained at the Police station for the last two days.
The Court said, “prima facie, the matter calls for enquiry and investigation, as the apparent detention of Mr. Khatri in the Police Station is axiomatically contrary to all canons of law and in the teeth of not just constitutional provisions, but also in plain violation of the guidelines issued by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in D.K. Basu Vs State of West Bengal.”
The Counsel appearing for the appellant submitted that his client was allegedly arrested on a false complaint that arises from a purely civil property dispute between Mr Khatri and one Smt Suman Lata. Two cases regarding the same property dispute are pending in Rohini Court.
On specific query put by the Court to Inspector Vijay Kumar, SHO Narela PS, told the Court that though Kishan Kumar Khatri came to the police station on 17.02.2021, but he was released the same evening.
Later, he changed his statement on a subsequent enquiry by the Court and he told the Court that Kishan Kumar Khatri was called to the Police station again on 19.02.2021 for questioning. He also confirmed to the Court that Kishan Kumar has not been placed under arrest in any FIR registered in the Police station nor he is named as suspect in any criminal investigation or proceeding.
The Court said, “in the circumstances, what is evident is that in the course of the present hearing and before the eyes of this Court, Mr. Kishan Kumar Khatri has been found in PS: Narela, contrary to what Inspector Vinay Kumar SHO, P.S. : Narela stated before this court initially. Inspector Vijay Kumar has also confirmed to this court that no FIR has been registered against Mr. Khatri nor is he required for any investigation. On the other hand Mr. Khatri has unequivocally stated before this court that he has been detained in the Police station for the last 02 days.”
“This court is also unable to fathom any reason why the petitioner, Mr Khatri’s son, would file a false Habeas Corpus petition if his father was not being so held,” noted by the Court in its order dated February 19.
The Court said, “Prima facie, the matter calls for enquiry and investigation, as the apparent detention of Mr. Khatri in the Police Station is axiomatically contrary to all canons of law and in the teeth of not just constitutional provisions, but also in plain violation of the guidelines issued by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in D.K. Basu vs. State of West Bengal, reported as AIR 1997 SC 610 and this court in numerous decisions.”
Following, the Court has directed the State to file the Status report.
The Court has also directed the Commissioner of Police, to conduct an enquiry into the detention of Mr. Krishan Kumar Khatri at PS : Narela, in accordance with law; and to file an action taken report before the court on or before the next date of hearing.
The Court in its order also recorded that Mr. Krishan Kumar Khatri has been released by Inspector Vinay Kumar, SHO, P.S.: Narela from the Police Station during the course of proceedings.
The matter would now be heard on February 24.Pawan-Khatri