Bengaluru police fined Rs. 1L for wrongly arresting Facebook-page admin
The Karnataka High Court on Friday imposed a fine of Rs. 1 lakh on Bengaluru police for registering FIRs against the administrator of a Facebook page. Earlier this year, the police had booked the Facebook page administrator over derogatory remarks against Janata Dal (Secular) supremo HD Deve Gowda, his son, then Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, and grandson, Nikhil Kumaraswamy. Here are more details.
Srirampura police registered first FIR in May
On May 26, the Srirampura police had lodged a complaint against S Jaikant, the admin of the Facebook page 'Troll Maga', for his comments on Deve Gowda and his family, Deccan Herald reported. On June 10, Jaikant obtained anticipatory bail from the sessions court, however, when he approached Srirampura police to execute the bail bond, the police reportedly didn't permit him to do so.
Jaikant arrested after second FIR
The police registered a second FIR against Jaikant on June 23 for posting defamatory content after obtaining anticipatory bail which led to his arrest. The magistrate sent Jaikant to police custody. In June, Karnataka HC reportedly ordered his release and stayed proceedings in both cases.
Now, HC asks government to pay Rs. 1 lakh fine
Meanwhile, on Friday, a single-judge HC bench of Justice PS Dinesh Kumar quashed the two FIRs and ordered the state government to pay Rs. 1 lakh to the petitioner in a month. The court directed the Director-General of Police (DGP) to conduct a departmental inquiry. The Rs. 1 lakh fine will be recovered from officers found guilty in the inquiry within three months.
Blatant violation of fundamental rights by police: Karnataka HC
According to The Times of India, the court said, "This is a classic case of blatant violation of fundamental rights by the police." It added, "Allegations in both complaints/FIRs are more or less identical. Actions of the police lead to an irresistible inference that a deliberate attempt was made by the police to ensure that the petitioner was 'somehow' detained."
HC orders probe against Magistrate for violating Supreme Court protocol
Separately, the court directed the Registrar General to conduct an inquiry against the Magistrate for violating Supreme Court protocols by sending Jaikant to police custody. The HC also referred to Arnish Kumar v/s State of Bihar. In the case, the SC ruled, "detention without recording reasons as aforesaid by the judicial Magistrate concerned shall be liable for departmental action by the appropriate High Court."