When the notorious booth capturer — or so the police claimed — was brought to the Allahabad executive magistrate’s court, the judge was left searching for words.
He immediately asked the lawyer of the accused to file a complaint so that he could instead ask the alert policemen a couple of questions.
After all, the ‘booth capturer’ they brought in is seven years old, chiefly worried about filling out his Class III workbooks.
Little Ashwani Kumar Kushwaha was clubbed along with booth capturers, arsonists, rioters and sundry anti-social elements likely to disrupt peace during the forthcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly polls.
Ashwani and his father Ram Milan Kushwaha received a notice from the magistrate’s court under Section 111 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) as the Colonelganj police feared “breach of peace” by the boy during the polls. They wanted him to execute a bond in the presence of the magistrate.
The boy’s father approached lawyer Devendra Misra on his son’s behalf after receiving the court notice. Misra approached the magistrate, O.P. Srivastava, to tell him that no proceedings for such charges can be initiated against a minor.
The magistrate asked the lawyer for a written complaint so that he could initiate action against the police for their thoughtless act. However, when the boy was allowed to go free, his father preferred to stay quiet fearing a backlash from policemen, said Devendra Misra, the lawyer.