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Bihar ADGP pulls up state police for ‘poor’ probe into SC/ST Act cases

Bihar Additional Director General of Police, Criminal Investigation Department (weaker sections), Anil Kishore Yadav, has pulled up state police for “very poor” investigation into cases lodged below provisions of SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

Cautioning police officers towards disobedience of order, the ADGP reminded them of current penal provisions, which vary from jail time period from six months to 2 years.

He additionally expressed dissatisfaction with the position of the state house division in monitoring the progress in cases, saying solely “khanapurti” — (work for appearances’ sake) — was taking place.

In a round issued on March 17, the ADGP said, “Review and assessment of SC/ST Act cases of last one year showed that the police submitted its final report in 23 per cent cases. Only in 19 per cent of chargesheeted matters, police have ensured arrest and surrender of the accused or confiscated their property. In 81 per cent cases, the police seem to have done their duties just by issuing notices under CrPC 41A.”

He mentioned that in most cases, police wrongly used the CrPC provision of Section 41A by simply issuing a discover to the accused and never attempting to arrest the accused, in any other case booked below non-bailable sections.

Section 41A, mentioned the ADGP, can’t be utilized in SC/ST Act cases because the part says {that a} police officer, the place arrest of an individual isn’t required, can problem a discover to the accused to seem earlier than him or at such different place as could also be specified.

The round, outlining the usual working process, is supposed for Inspector Generals, Deputy Inspector Generals of police and Senior Superintendents and Superintendents of police.

The round added, “No sense of urgency is being shown (by the police) to submit chargesheet within stipulated 60 days and state DGP’s 26 May 2014 order to immediately record statement of the accused and witnesses are not being followed… Several public prosecutors said that final submission reports are presented (in courts) in several cases despite police having evidence.”

The particular public prosecutors have additionally revealed “there has been undue pressure on the complainants to compromise with the accused because of attitude of the police and complainants’ morale is also hurt”, the round mentioned. It added that “under these circumstances, submitting chargesheet within stipulated 60 days in the SC/ST Act looks a daydream”.

The round additionally expresses disappointment on the position of the state house division. “After the September 4, 2019 meeting of the home department, there has been only “khanapurti” when it comes to implementation of directions concerning expediting investigation into SC/ST Act cases.

The round added it was below such situations that human rights organisations and the Supreme Court would make robust observations.

On being requested in regards to the round, Additional Director General of Police (Headquarters) and Bihar Police spokesperson Jitendra Kumar mentioned, “Letter is detailed and self explanatory. Needs no further elaboration.”

Overall, Bihar has registered 12,224 cases below the SC/ST Act until December. As of December 2020, chargesheet has been filed in 7,242 cases and a closing submission report has been filed in 1,360 cases. A complete of 8,602 cases have been disposed of and three,622 cases are pending. Till December 2020, there are 14 districts wherein over 100 cases are pending. Between 2015 and 2020, a complete of 436 homicide, 330 rape cases had been lodged below SC/ST Act.

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