pil - police action, state responsibility & art 21

The Vana Pradesh is one of the States in India. Since last six months a regional agitation is going on for separate Statehood in this State. On January 25th 2008, the state police entered into a residential area of Haritha Nagar, in the capital city of the State suspecting some agitators are taking shelter in that locality. The police manhandled the residents of this colony and also opened fire. Due to this firing, several persons were injured and five persons were killed on the spot. The said incident was published in the local and national news papers and also covered by the electronic media.

“The Society for Citizen Rights”, a Registered Society striving for human rights, filed one PIL- (Public Interest Litigation) in the High Court of Vana Pradesh contending that the action of the police is violation of human rights and Art 21. of the Constitution of India. The State contended that the PIL is not maintainable as the Petitioner Society is having private interest. It is further contended by the State that the said Police are personally liable for their misdeeds and the State is not liable since the State never authorized the police to do so. But, the High court rejecting the contentions of the State, allowed this PIL and held that the action of the police is clear violation of the Art. 21 of the Constitution of India and thereby awarded the compensation of Rupees Two lakhs to each injured person and Rupees Ten Lakhs to the families of each killed person in the firing.

Aggrieved by the said ruling of the High Court, the State preferred SLP (Special Leave Petition) in the Honorable Supreme Court of India by contending that there is no violation of Art. 21 of the Constitution of India and the State is not liable for the misdeeds of the police. The Supreme Court granted the Leave and posted the matter for final hearing and framed the following issues:
1. Whether the PIL is maintainable or not?
2. Whether there is violation of Art.21 of the Constitution of India or not?
3. Whether the State of Vana Pradesh is liable to pay the compensation to the Victims or Not?
4. Whether the compensation directed by the High Court is excessive or not?

I humbly request you to mention the Arguments from each side.


Im convinced that PIL is maintainable and I am also convinced that Supreme Court will take the matter seriously. If such case of violation of human rights that also by the protectors of the people  who will protect the people and who will police the police.Compensation against is reasonable for death but for injury it depends on the nature of the injury but going buy your version 2 lakh is reasonable. Did the National  Human Rights Commission visited the area?



Suresh, I suppose this is a moot problem given for students of law. I was taken back to see Vana Pradesh is a State in India. :)  It is better if you ask your doubts in specific rather than giving the facts as it is..  :)


where is vana pradesh? are you talking about uttaranchal or jharkhand?


Suchitra is right. THis appears to be a moot problem given to some students of prestigious law schools in india.




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