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Judgments of Supreme Court of India and High Courts

Arjun Bajaj vs The State Of Madhya Pradesh on 2 July, 2018

1
HIGH COURT OF MADHYA PRADESH:JABALPUR
Cr.A. No.3324/2018
Arjun Bajaj vs. State of M.P. and another

JABALPUR, DATED : 02 .07.2018
Shri Amit Dubey, counsel with Shri L.P. Singh,
counsel for the appellant.
Shri Sharad Sharma Government Advocate for the
respondent no.1/State.

Shri R.S. Yadav, counsel for the respondent
no.2/victim.

Heard on this appeal for anticipatory bail under
Section 14-A of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes
(Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, filed on behalf of
appellant Arjun Bajaj in Crime No.52/2018, registered by
P.S. Civil Lines, District Chhatarpur (M.P.), under sections
294, 341, 354-D and 506-B of the Indian Penal Code and
sections 3(1) (w) (I) and 3(2)(5A) of the Scheduled Castes
and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

This criminal appeal is directed against the order
dated 16.04.2018 passed by the Court of Special Judge
SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, Chhatarpur, in Bail
Application No.1261/2018.

As per the prosecution case, the prosecutrix is a 21
years old major unmarried girl belonged to a schedule caste.
She lodged the first information report on 30.01.2018 to the
effect that the appellant has been stalking and harassing her
for past one year. He used to send dirty messages on her
mobile phone. At about 05:00 p.m. on 28.01.2018, appellant
intercepted the prosecutrix and started to tease her. He
threatened that if she disclosed the matter to anyone or
reported to police, he would kill her; therefore, she did not
2
HIGH COURT OF MADHYA PRADESH:JABALPUR
Cr.A. No.3324/2018
Arjun Bajaj vs. State of M.P. and another

lodged the first information report. Ultimately, the FIR was
lodged on 30.01.2018.

Learned counsel for the appellant submits that the
appellant has been falsely implicated in the matter. The FIR
was lodged after a delay of about 48 hours. No dirty
messages have been seized from the mobile phone of the
prosecutrix. No specific allegations have been leveled
against the appellant. The only allegation that has been
leveled is regarding stalking and teasing. It has further been
submitted that on 20.01.2018, the appellant had lodged the
FIR against Rohit Dhruvkaria, who is brother of the
prosecutrix under Sections 341, 294, 323 and 506 read with
section 34 of the IPC; therefore, in order to pressurize the
appellant into entering in a compromise with the brother of
the prosecutrix, he has persuaded his sister to lodge this
false report against the appellant; therefore, in view of
aforesaid, placing reliance upon the judgment rendered by
Supreme Court in the case Dr. Subhash Kashinath
Mahajan Vs. State of Maharashtra (Cr.A.No.416/2018
dated 20th March, 2018), learned counsel for the appellant
submits that the appellant is entitled to anticipatory bail
because the allegation leveled against the appellant appears
to be prima facie mala fide. Therefore, it has been
submitted that in the light of aforesaid judgment, the matter
may be considered and anticipatory bail may be granted to
the appellant.

Learned Government Advocate for the respondent
no.1/State as well as learned counsel for the victim on the
other hand has opposed the appeal.

3

HIGH COURT OF MADHYA PRADESH:JABALPUR
Cr.A. No.3324/2018
Arjun Bajaj vs. State of M.P. and another

The Supreme Court has held in the case of Dr.
Subhash Kashinath Mahajan Vs. State of Maharashtra
(Supra) as follows:

81. Accordingly, we direct that in absence of any other independent
offence calling for arrest, in respect of offences under the Atrocities
Act, no arrest may be effected, if an accused person is a public
servant, without written permission of the appointing authority and
if such a person is not a public servant, without written permission
of the Senior Superintendent of Police of the District. Such
permissions must be granted for recorded reasons which must be
served on the person to be arrested and to the concerned court. As
and when a person arrested is produced before the Magistrate, the
Magistrate must apply his mind to the reasons recorded and further
detention should be allowed only if the reasons recorded are found
to be valid. To avoid false implication, before FIR is registered,
preliminary enquiry may be made whether the case falls in the
parameters of the Atrocities Act and is not frivolous or motivated.
Consideration of present case

82. As far as the present case is concerned, we find merit in the
submissions of learned amicus that the proceedings against the
appellant are liable to be quashed.

Conclusions

83. Our conclusions are as follows:

i) Proceedings in the present case are clear abuse of process of court
and are quashed.

ii) There is no absolute bar against grant of anticipatory bail in
cases under the Atrocities Act if no prima facie case is made out or
where on judicial scrutiny the complaint is found to be prima facie
mala fide. We approve the view taken and approach of the Gujarat
High Court in Pankaj D Suthar (supra) and Dr. N.T. Desai (supra)
and clarify the judgments of this Court in Balothia (supra) and
Manju Devi (supra);

ii) In view of acknowledged abuse of law of arrest in cases under the
Atrocities Act, arrest of a public servant can only be after approval
of the appointing authority and of a non-public servant after
approval by the S.S.P. which may be granted in appropriate cases if
considered necessary for reasons recorded. Such reasons must be
scrutinized by the Magistrate for permitting further detention.

iv) To avoid false implication of an innocent, a preliminary enquiry
may be conducted by the DSP concerned to find out whether the
allegations make out a case under the Atrocities Act and that the
allegations are not frivolous or motivated.

v) Any violation of direction (iii) and (iv) will be actionable by way
of disciplinary action as well as contempt.
The above directions are prospective.

As such, the scope for grant of anticipatory bail has
been considerably widened. Therefore, in view of the
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HIGH COURT OF MADHYA PRADESH:JABALPUR
Cr.A. No.3324/2018
Arjun Bajaj vs. State of M.P. and another

submissions made by learned counsel for the appellant, it
would be appropriate to dispose of this appeal for
anticipatory bail with following directions:

A preliminary enquiry shall be conducted by the DSP
concerned to find out whether the allegations make out a
case under the Atrocities Act and that the allegations are
not frivolous or motivated.

The appellant shall not be arrested before approval by
the S.S.P., which may be granted if deemed appropriate and
necessary for reasons to be recorded. Such reasons shall be
scrutinized by the Magistrate for permitting further
detention.

Accordingly, the appeal stands disposed of with
aforesaid directions.

(C.V. Sirpurkar)
sh Judge
Digitally signed
by S HUSHMAT
HUSSAIN
Date: 2018.07.02
17:57:48 +05’30’

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