Proclamation order by Trial Judge quashed by Karnataka HC due to procedural irregularities; Emphasizes need for accused to join investigation.

CASE TITLE – Shridhar K. Pujar v. State of Karnataka


DATED ON – 02.05.2024

QUORUM – Justice V. Srishananda



The Petitioner is a Police Officer of D.S.P rank. Allegations are leveled against him that he was involved in interfering with the true course of justice inasmuch as he had interfered with the investigation of Crime Nos.91/2020 and 287/2020. In respect of those crimes when the investigation was under process, the petitioner was said to have been found in the company of the Lawyer who represented the accused therein. He was required to accompany the Police personnel who had spotted him in the car. At that juncture, he escaped from the clutches and he was not available to the Police was the allegation. Based on the said incident, a case came to be registered against the petitioner in Crime No.19/2024 and Crime No.1/2024 and attempts were made by the petitioner to obtain an order of grant of Anticipatory Bail were rejected. In Criminal Petition Nos. 2380/2024 and 2916/2024 the petitioner was seeking to quash the two criminal cases registered in Crime Nos.19/2024 and 1/2024 against him. The attempts made by the petitioner to submit himself for the process of law by seeking an order of grant of anticipatory bail was turned down by the learned District & Session Judge and a Coordinate Bench of same High Court of Karnataka.



Whether the criminal cases (Crime Nos. 19/2024 and 1/2024) against the D.S.P Petitioner/Accused can be quashed, given the allegations of his interference in investigations.



The Hon’ble High Court of Karnataka noted that it is a settled principles of law and requires no emphasis that every accused is presumed to be innocent unless the allegations leveled against him stands proved before the court of law beyond all reasonable doubts. Whether at all the allegations leveled against the petitioner is true or not cannot be decided by them at this stage, as the case against the petitioner is still in the inception stage. And also stated that the fact remains that unless the petitioner joins the investigation and cooperates with pending investigation in respect of Crime No.19/2024 and crime No.1/2024 no useful purpose would be served by simply keeping the investigation pending, and held that an arrangement needs to be made which would strike a harmonious balance between the rights of the petitioner and the need of the prosecution. And as to the Appeal by the Petitioner to quash the FIR against him, the Hon’ble High Court of Karnataka stated that generally an FIR cannot be quashed unless it has acted prejudicial to the interest of the petitioner and by the allegation found in the complaint, no case could made out against the accused/petitioner, and in the case on hand, there was no special reason for the Court to quash the FIR itself. They then proceeded to allow Criminal Petition No. 2925/2024 stating that the Order of proclamation passed by the learned Trial Judge as against the petitioner is quashed, on account of procedural irregularities. And Criminal Petition Nos.2380/2024 and 2916/2024 were Disposed Of with some of the conditions being that the Petitioner shall completely cooperate with the Investigation Agency, and on conclusion of the custodial investigation, the petitioner shall be let free by taking a bond in a sum of Rs.2,00,000/- with two sureties to the satisfaction of the Investigation Officer. Further, the petitioner is directed to appear before the Investigation Officer as and when called and shall not in any way tamper the prosecution evidence.


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Judgement Reviewed by – Gnaneswarran Beemarao

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