Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday said the police are expected to uphold law before taking drastic steps of arrest and reserved its order on a plea by a political activist, claiming to be associated with the Congress, seeking the FIR against him by the Pune police be quashed.
The FIR was lodged against him for commenting on social media on Higher Education Minister Chandrakant Patil’s purportedly objectionable remarks against social reformers Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar and Mahatma Jyotiba Phule.
The HC bench directed the police not to file a charge sheet until further orders. The police had registered a case against him under section 153A of the Indian Penal Code that deals with promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, etc.
In his plea, the activist had contended that the FIR against him was malicious and that the offence was not made out. Other FIRs had also been registered against him – one for misbehaving with a policeman outside the minister’s residence.
The court said that it will consider if the FIR was lodged without application of mind. “You have to show the offence was made out before you took a drastic step. The Supreme Court has time and again said registering FIR has serious consequences,” it said.