Sunday, July 14, 2024
HomeNews Reports'Subbiah Shanmugam arrested with an ulterior motive to detain him on a public holiday':...

‘Subbiah Shanmugam arrested with an ulterior motive to detain him on a public holiday’: Madras HC grants bail to ABVP leader

The court said, "Individuals are arrested during the night of Friday so that they will not be in a position to move the court of law till Monday. Such detention would be absolutely violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India..."

On March 22, Madras HC granted bail to Dr Subbiah Shanmugam, former National President, ABVP. In its order, the Court noted that arrest was made with an ulterior motive to detain him on a public holiday so that he could be detained for over 48 hours. The Court said, “Individuals are arrested during the night of Friday so that they will not be in a position to move the Court of law till Monday. Such detention would be absolutely violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India, and it could be both a crime and tort (civil wrong) also.”

Subbiah, who is serving as a Surgical Oncologist at Stanly Government Medical College Hospital, was accused of throwing a used mask inside the gate of an old lady’s house and urinating in front of the gate. The alleged incident took place on July 10, 2020, at Balaji Vijayaraghavan. A complaint was filed against him at Adambakkam Police Station.

After two weeks, based on the complaint, an FIR under Sections Section 271 (disobedience to quarantine rule), 427 (mischief causing damage) and Section 4 of TNPHW Act, 2002 and later, the charges were altered into Section 271, 427, 447(Punishment for criminal trespass) of IPC and Section 3 of Tamil Nadu Public Property (Prevention of Damage and Loss) Act, 1992 read with Section 4 of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 1998 was filed against him.

Notably, in October 2020, the family of the elderly had said they wanted to submit a withdrawal of complaint letter. However, the police said they had to continue the investigation as the FIR was already lodged. The family had alleged pressure from the neighbours to withdraw the complaint. On the other hand, Subbiah had claimed that the allegations made by the family of the elderly lady were fake, and the video was doctored.

Subbiah was subsequently arrested and remanded to judicial custody. He filed for bail on an urgent basis without approaching the trial court. In his plea to the High Court, Subbiah alleged that the arrest was in gross violation of his fundamental rights and accused police of abuse of power. His counsel informed the Court that the dispute between Subbiah and the complainant had ended in a compromise long ago. However, he was arrested under the pressure of the ruling government as he was an officer at the Students Organization (ABVP).

The Court noted his arrested on a public holiday was done with the sole intention to prevent him from getting legal assistance and deemed the arrested a violation of the detainee’s fundamental rights. It is notable that the Supreme Court had also stated in a judgement that, “No arrest can be made because it is lawful for the police officer to do so. The existence of the power to arrest is one thing. The justification for the exercise of it is quite another. The police officer must be able to justify the arrest apart from his power to do so. Arrest and detention in police lock-up of a person can cause incalculable harm to the reputation and self-esteem of a person. No arrest can be made in a routine manner on a mere allegation of commission of an offence made against a person.

“It would be prudent for a police officer in the interest of protection of the constitutional rights of a citizen and perhaps in his own interest that no arrest should be made without a reasonable satisfaction reached after some investigation as to the genuineness and bona fides of a complaint and a reasonable belief both as to the person’s complicity and even so as to the need to effect the arrest. Denying a person of his liberty is a serious matter,” the court order further said.

The High Court granted interim bail to Subbiah on a bond of Rs 25,000 /- to the satisfaction of the Superintendent of Prison, Chengalpet.

Join OpIndia's official WhatsApp channel

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

Related Articles

Trending now

Recently Popular

- Advertisement -