Calcutta HC Dismisses Proceedings Against DSP Accused Of Harassing Colleague During Departmental Probe

Calcutta HC

The Calcutta High Court recently dismissed criminal proceedings against a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), on the ground that the charges levelled against him did not constitute a cognizable offence under the Indian Criminal Code (IPC).

A single judge bench of Justice Rai Chattopadhyay was hearing the matter.

The DSP was charged under sections 406 (Punishment for criminal breach of trust) and 420 (Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the IPC.

Abhijit Saha filed a complaint against three people, including the petitioner, alleging that he was the subject of a departmental inquiry based on vexatious claims. He further alleged that the petitioner, as the inquiry officer in the departmental procedures, humiliated him on several occasions while being helped by the other accused person, and urged the other accused person to lie in the investigation against him. It was also claimed that he had been threatened with bogus implications.

The complainant was interrogated by the Siliguri Trial Court under Section 200 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. By decision dated 30 May 2022, it issued summons against the petitioner under sections 420 & 406 of the IPC, observing that a prima facie case had been put out against the petitioner.

The petitioner, who was dissatisfied with the trial court’s findings, moved the high court under Section 482 of the CrPC.

According to the bench, the petitioner must have had the purpose to conduct fraudulent misappropriation of any property entrusted to him by the complainant in order to be guilty of an offence under Section 406 of the IPC.

Furthermore, the single bench added, “There are no charges of inducement or inducement for the purpose of deception of the complainant, or any culpability of the present petitioner’s desire to fraudulently misappropriate any of the complainant’s entrusted possessions.”

“The Court cannot but be constrained to observe, with frustration and hopelessness, that the Trial Court’s finding of a prima facie case having been made out against the present petitioner suffers from the brazen perfunctory and negligent discourse of the power vested in the Trial Court by law,” the bench stated.

“A person may be emotionally offended by another person’s behaviour or conduct, but not every such action would amount to being responsible or criminal until satisfied to be so,” it added.

As a result of the aforesaid conclusions, the single bench dismissed the case.



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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte