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Dwarka encounter: Delhi HC orders for preservation of CDR data of police officials

ANI | Updated: Sep 29, 2022 18:09 IST

New Delhi (India), September 29 (ANI): The Delhi High Court has directed authorities to preserve the CDR location chart of the police raiding party in a case of an alleged fake encounter in the Dwarka district. The direction was on the submission of one of the victims in the matter.
Earlier, the court stayed the trial court's direction for the registration of an FIR against the police officials of the district. The additional DCP had challenged the order of the trial court before the high court.
Justice Yogesh Khanna on Tuesday passed the direction after hearing the submission of the counsel for respondent Deepak Chauhan. The counsel for State sought time as ASG Sanjeev Bhandari has to appear in the matter.
The bench directed to preserve the CDR details from October 1-5, 2021, for the members of the police raiding party. It also directed to preserve the details from July 23-27, 2021.
The matter has been listed for November 25 for further hearing.
It was submitted by advocate Vrinda Grover and Soutik Banerjee that the incident is on October 1, 2021. The data relating to CDR won't be available after October 1, 2022, as it is preserved only for a year as per policy.
A reply on behalf of accused Deepak Chauhan was also filed on the petition earlier moved by an additional DCP against the order of the trial court for registration of FIR.
It was stated in the reply that the petitioner (Delhi police) secured a partial ex parte (without hearing the other party) ad-interim stay of the impugned order from this court in respect of the direction for registration of FIR against the concerned police officers.
It was also submitted that the present case pertains to a shocking and gross abuse of authority and uniform by the Petitioner and other police personnel, acting in grave violation of the law including illegal detention, custodial violence and a staged fake police encounter of the Respondent.

There is a complete violation by the Petitioner of the mandatory guidelines issued by the Supreme Court in PUCL vs the State of Maharashtra with regard to the investigation into cases of alleged police encounters including failure to register proper FIR, failure to have an independent investigation by a separate police team, non - recording of statement of victim / Respondent u/Sec. 164 CrPC, etc, the report said.
The counsel for the respondent Deepak Chauhan submitted that the orders for registration of the FIR need to be given immediate effect to ensure that time-sensitive information, evidence and material are not lost or destroyed, as it remains in the custody of the police officers whose actions are the subject matter of investigation for police encounter. The documents, material, evidence and information related to the case need to be immediately preserved and placed in safe custody in order to ensure that a fair investigation can be carried out.
The bench earlier issued notice to three accused persons namely Deepak Chauhan, Bablu and Aijaj through all modes, including email/WhatsApp.
The Delhi police had stated in the petition that any direction to lodge an FIR against honest officers, acting bona fide in a crime-ridden district is not only perverse but also violates the rights of those officers under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India and be set aside.
The Additional DCP, Dwarka district, had challenged the order passed by the Court of Additional Session Judge (ASJ), Dwarka Court on March 24, 2022.
Additional Standing Counsel (ASC) for Delhi Police Avi Singh had argued that the trial court clubbed three separate FIRs related to separate cases, and through a common order granted bail to all accused without considering their antecedents, recoveries or the scope of their involvement in the crime. The joining of three distinct cases is beyond the mandate of Section 223 CrPC.
Avi Singh had also argued the trial court judge stepped beyond the jurisdictional mandate of the CrPC and directed that the handwritten complaint filed in the bail application unsupported by affidavit, be converted into Section 156(3) complaints and put up before the Metropolitan Magistrate (MM).
The counsel for the Delhi police had further argued that the trial court judge erred by recording adverse findings against the raiding party on the basis of an ipse dixit (unproven) statement by the accused and entirely prejudging the case against the police.
It was also argued that without recommending the matter for a vigilance enquiry or to the jurisdictional police complaints authority, the trial court judge virtually directed the MM to register an FIR against the police officials, which is entirely dehors (outside the scope of) the mandate of Section 156 (3) CrPC and against the principle of separation of powers underlined in the Constitution of India and the CrPC.
ASC had argued that the ASJ erred in law by seeking the registration of FIR without considering that a prior sanction under Section 140 of the Delhi Police Act is required for initiating an Investigation under Section 156 (3) of the Cr. P.C.
The trial court while granting bail to accused Deepak Chauhan, Bablu and Aijaj noted that accused Irshad, Aijaj, Deepak Chauhan, Bablu and Sachin had gunshot injuries in their knees while they were trying to flee after firing at the police party in different cases on different dates in 2021. (ANI)