Police complaint authority constituted for Delhi: Delhi High Court

 A police complaint authority to look into complaints against erring policemen in the national capital has been set up, the Centre told the Delhi High Court today.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar was also informed that the Lieutenant Governor (LG) has constituted the authority on the Centre’s direction.

Senior advocate Sidharth Luthra, appearing for the LG and the Delhi police, said the Police Complaint Authority (PCA) will be headed by a Chairman with three members, including a woman.

“One of the three members must be a woman. The Chairman will be either a retired high court judge, a person of repute and stature from civil society, a retired civil servant or a retired police officer,” the senior counsel said.

Central government standing counsel Anurag Ahluwalia said a notification in this regard was issued on January 29, which also explains the appointment, removal and terms and condition of the appointment.

He said the order also deliberates upon the role and functions and the powers of the PCA.

As per the notification, the authority shall enquire into allegations of serious misconduct against police personnel, either on its own or on a complaint received from a victim, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), LG, Chief Secretary or Principal Secretary (Home) of the Delhi government.

The authorities were responding to a PIL filed by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, which took exception to the Delhi government’s decision taken on February 27, 2012, designating the Public Grievances Commission here as a PCA for the National Capital Territory.

The petition had sought quashing of the decision.

The notification stated that the PCA may not entertain those cases which are under consideration of any court or the NHRC or any other statutory body.

“Cases of complaints regarding the Delhi police will be looked into by PCA and not by Public Grievances Commission.

Accordingly, the cases relating to Delhi Police pending with Public Grievances Commission shall be transferred to PCA,” the government notification states.

The court noted that the issue raised in the petition was satisfied, so it should be disposed of.

The petitioner, however, sought time to examine the order and file his stand on next date of hearing on February 6.

Maha not implementing GR to appoint police complaints body

Maharashtra Home Secretary has been asked by the Bombay High Court to file an affidavit within three weeks on a petition alleging that a Government Resolution for constituting a Police Complaints Authority to look into police lapses has not been implemented.

A bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar asked the Maharashtra Home Secretary on January 23 to file an affidavit in reply to the petition within three weeks.

On September 22, 2006, the Supreme Court had issued directions under Article 32 read with Article 142 of the Constitution for setting up a State Police Complaint Authority and District Police Complaint Authority.

Following this, the state issued a GR to appoint the Police Complaint Authority. However, four years have passed and the GR is not implemented as such a body is not functional, According to the petition.

This showed that the state was not complying with the law laid down by the apex court and the GR was merely an eye wash, the petition contended.

The petitioner, Makarand Mahadik, a city resident, alleged that he had been experiencing non-cooperative and hostile attitude of policemen when it comes to taking cognisance of complaints against influential persons and politicians.

Hence, the appointment of an authority to hear complaints against policemen and politicians was necessary in keeping with the apex court guidelines, he said.

The state government was duty-bound to constitute a Police Complaint Authority, fill up vacancies and provide all infrastructure and facilities for the same, the petition argued.

Non-constituting the Police Complaints Authority was depriving citizens of a vital remedy and increasing social unrest and also putting burden on the courts by encouraging litigations, the petition submitted.