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  • In a recent case titled Rakesh Kumar vs. Vijayanta arya (DCP) and Ors. the Hon’ble Delhi HC has sentenced a police officer to undergo one day simple imprisonment and to pay a cost of Rs.15,000 to the petitioner for arresting him in violation of the guidelines issued in Arnesh Kumar vs. State of Bihar (2014)SC.
  • Taking note of the fact that the charges against the petitioner (accused) were those of criminal breach of trust which warrant an imprisonment upto three years, the same did not allow the police to arrest him in the way that they did.
  • According to the order of the SC in the Arnesh Kumar case, a notice under section 41A of CrPC was mandatory. The same was not given to the accused. The guidelines also categorically state that arrest is an exception and instead of arrest, a notice under 41A should be given in cases where imprisonment stipulated is less than 7 years.
  • Justice Najmi Waziri, while imposing a cost of Rs.2000 on the said police personnel, also observed that the subsequent release of the accused or his acquittal can never recompense the irreparable loss caused to the reputation and personal liberty of the person who has been illegally arrested in such a manner.
  • Observing that the petitioner’s right to personal liberty has been ensured by the Constitution of India, it can only be limited or curtailed by an act of the legislature. The procedure established by the Legislature by enacting section 41A and the guidelines of the Apex Court in Arnesh Kumar have been blatantly violated in the present case.
  • Taking note of the hardship and indignity suffered by the accused, the Court also observed that the humiliation and indignity is not just suffered by the accused, but it is also borne by his entire family. No amount of explanation offered to the neighbours or his subsequent acquittal or discharge would ever restore his tarnished reputation or the reputation of his wife and children.
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