In the case of Arnesh Kumar v. State of Bihar, the Allahabad High Court recently found a police officer in contempt of court for willfully disobeying the Supreme Court’s order, and this week it sentenced him to 14 days of simple jail.

While serving the accused with a notice of appearance under Section 41A CrPC in a case filed under Sections 353, 504, and 506 of the IPC, the court noted that contemnor Chandan Kumar, Incharge of Police Station, Kanth, District Shahjahanpur, instead of complying with the Supreme Court’s directive, merely noted in the General Diary (GD) that the accused declined to accept the terms and conditions of the notice and then arrested him.

A notice for appearance under Section 41A of the Criminal Procedure Code should be issued on the accused in certain situations rather than an arrest, according to the Arnesh Kumar ruling, if the offence carries a sentence of less than seven years in prison. In such situations, the arrest may be undertaken under extraordinary circumstances, but the justifications must be documented in writing.However, it was discovered that the Investigating Officer (IO), Chandan Kumar, did not adhere to the requirements of Section 41A in the current case, and no valid reason for the arrest of the accused was recorded in writing by the IO, despite the fact that the relevant offences were covered by the provisions for which the maximum punishment was not more than 7 years.

The justices Suneet Kumar and Syed WaizMian’s panel noted that the accuser’s Muslim community affiliation was utilised by the defendant to seek to add further communal colour to the case.Although there was no item in the GD indicating that there was any such risk of a communal flare-up in the event the accused was not apprehended, the court noted that the defendant claimed there was a fear of communal rioting and that is why he had the accused arrested.

“In order to arrest the accused, the deceptive entry in the GD was made wilfully and deliberately with the express intent of avoiding the mandate in Arnesh Kumar (supra). Given the circumstances, the contemnor had disregarded the directive that was imposed on him, “In court. in order to avoid showing sympathy for the defendant, the court sentenced him to 14 days of simple jail and also levied a fine of Rs. 1000.

However, the court postponed the punishment for 60 days starting from the date of the judgement after receiving a submission from the contemnor’s attorney requesting to file an appeal under Section 19 of the Contempt of Court Act, 1971.

In Re v. Shri Chandan Kumar, Investigating Officer, is the name of the case.

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