The Delhi High Court has awarded a compensation of Rs 40,000 to a man who was off-loaded by immigration authorities from an aircraft here on the basis of a lookout circular issued by the the National Commission for Women (NCW), saying statutory bodies are not empowered to initiate criminal proceedings.
The High Court said that the compensation award has to be equally shared by the NCW and Foreigners’ Regional Registration Office (FRRO), for de-boarding Vikram Sharma, against whom no FIR was lodged in connection with a matrimonial dispute.
Sharma had approached the court, alleging that the FRRO had acted illegally in off-loading and detaining him here in April 2008, at the instance of the NCW, where his wife had filed a complaint.
“This court is of the view that the action of NCW in writing to the DCP, FRRO for the issuance of LOC (look-out circular) against Sharma was without the authority of law. The consequent action of FRRO (which) resulted in the petitioner (Sharma) being detained at the IGI airport on April 8, 2008 was also illegal,” Justice S Muralidhar said.
The court asked the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to issue clarification orders, within three months, stating that a request for issuance of LOC cannot emanate from statutory bodies like NCW, NHRC as well as National and State Commissions for Protection of Child Rights, which are vested in a civil court.