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THE POLICE USE THE POWER OF THE MAGISTRATE TO ISSUE WARRANT OF ARREST AGAINST AN ACCUSED, ONLY AS A TOOL TO AVOID ITS RESPONSIBILITY TO CARRY OUT THE INVESTIGATION TO THE LOGICAL END; AND ONLY FOR THE PURPOSE OF GETTING SUCH AN ACCUSED DECLARED AS PROCLAIMED OFFENDER: PUNJAB AND HARYANA HIGH COURT

This particular decision is upheld by the High Court of Punjab and Haryana  through the division bench of Justice Rajbir Sehrawat in the case of Gurjeet Singh Johar v State of Punjab and ors (CRM-M No.47872 of 2019 (O&M)

FACTS

The petitioner made this petition under Sections 482 and 483 of the CrPC to quash the arrest warrants issued against him by the Magistrate. The counsel for the petitioner argued that there were no reasons to arrest the petitioner given by the police in their application to the Magistrate. Further, the situation of the current case did not allow the Magistrate an opportunity to exercise his discretion regarding the petitioner being evasive of the arrest or not.

JUDGEMENT

The court stated that a police officer has almost omnipresent power to arrest. He can arrest a person even on having a suspicion that such person has committed a cognizable offence. provisions of Section 41 of the Cr.P.C. are quite clear that unless a cognizable offence is committed by a person in the presence of such police officer, police officer cannot arrest an accused only on the basis of his whims that he suspects the said person to have committed some offence. If such person has committed some cognizable offence, which is punishable for imprisonment, then before arresting the person, the police officer has to satisfy himself that the arrest of such person is necessary; for the purposes delineated in the Section itself. This court also finds that more often then not, the police use the power of the Magistrate to issue warrant of arrest against an accused, only as a tool to avoid its responsibility to carry out the investigation to the logical end; and only for the purpose of getting such an accused declared as proclaimed offender. This methodology is normally adopted by the police just to get rid of the responsibility of putting a report before the Magistrate qua investigation, which otherwise is a mandate of law cast upon the police, or even to avoid arresting an accused in inconvenient cases or inconvenient circumstances. As a result, lots of persons are got declared as proclaimed offenders; and forgotten altogether by the police thereafter. Hence, as observed above, this court is also of the view that before the Magistrate/court has taken cognizance of any offence, the power of issuance of warrants of arrest under any provision of Cr.P.C., on an application of a police officer, cannot be invoked by the Magistrate as a routine matter. it is quite clear that the Magistrate has issued the warrant only to enlarge the effort of the police qua its investigation; as the reason for issuing warrant of arrest. The only other reason mentioned is that there is no stay of arrest qua the petitioner by any other court.

JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY NAISARGIKA MISHRA

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