The Supreme Court on Tuesday reprimanded the UP Chief Secretary Jawed Usmani for failing to appear before the Allahabad High Court which had sought his presence for wrongly invoking the Gangsters Act against a man by Barabanki district magistrate and police.
A bench of justices Altamas Kabir and J Chelameshwar asked the Chief Secretary to appear before the High Court and posted the matter for further hearing to August 21. “Your conduct is not at all correct. Why did you disobey the court order? We will not allow this. “Your conduct has been very very bad. You may be the Chief Secretary but you have to obey the law. You have to obey the law otherwise there will be no rule of law in this country,” the bench told senior counsel S R Singh appearing for the state.
While agreeing to abide by the direction, the counsel assured the court that the Chief Secretary would comply with the high court direction. The high court had earlier on July 3 passed severe strictures against the Barabanki District Magistrate and also commented on the conduct of various district magistrates while dealing with the bail application of Dinesh Lonia who had challenged the states’s decision to invoke the UP Gangster & Anti Social Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986 against him.
The Allahabad high court had, while taking the view that there was no material against the accused for the district magistrate and other police officials to invoke the Act, made several scathing observations against the officials. It had also directed the Chief Secretary to conduct an inquiry on the conduct of the Barabanki District Magistrate and submit a report before it within a month, failing which it said the top civil servant himself would appear before it.