The Mumbai police yet again came under a cloud following a Supreme Court (SC) observation on Wednesday in connection with the impounding of passports of three Ugandan nationals.
A first information report (FIR) was registered by the Videocon group with the MRA Marg police station on April 19 against three Ugandan nationals, including Issac Insanga Musumba, who claims to be a senior advisor to the President of Uganda, under sections 384 (extortion), 120 (b) (criminal conspiracy), and 441 (criminal trespass) of the Indian penal code. The three Ugandan nationals were arrested and the police restrained them from leaving the country.
On Wednesday, the SC said such actions on the part of some police officers bring a bad name to the country and directed that the foreign nationals be allowed to leave for their country.
When asked what action would be suggested against the erring police officers, Sadanand Date, joint commissioner of police (law and order), said: “We will have to study the judgment and then take necessary action.”
This is the latest in a series of criticisms that the police have faced in recent months. Experts feel that the police should be careful while arresting people.
Former IPS official and advocate YP Singh said that the police are reckless in arresting people against whom FIRs are registered.
“The power to arrest people is one thing, but police should see if there is a need to arrest a person after an FIR is registered. Even the SC guidelines are clear in such cases,” he said.
In such cases police can simply file a charge sheet, and if the case is serious, the passport of the accused can be seized. However, in this particular case, it was not needed, Singh added.
Former director general of police Julio Rebeiro said that the police should not rush to arrest people in cases of cheating, suicide and such before first carrying out proper investigations.