Skip to content Skip to navigation

Case against CM Himanta Biswa Sharma

Sub-Divisional Judicial Magistrate-1 (SDJM 1) Kamrup (M) has directed Dispur police to register a case against Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on the basis of a complaint by MP Abdul Khaleque. Khaleque alleged that the Chief Minister made inflammatory remarks over an eviction drive at Gorukhuti in Darang district. Khaleque  approached the court after the Dispur police station did not register an FIR against Sarma, 

Present: Sri. B. Baruah, AJS, SDJM 1, Kamrup (M) Dated: 05.03.2022

Complainant Abdul Khaleque is absent with steps showing cause vide petition bearing number 3162 and the prayer of the complainant to dispense with his personal presence is allowed and he is also allowed to be represented by his engaged counsel S. A. Borbhuyan for the day as prayed for.

The complainant has come before this Court u/s 156(3) of Cr.P.C. with a prayer to forward his petition to the Officer-in-Charge, Dispur Police Station for registering a case in relation to the offences punishable u/s 153/153A of IPC allegedly committed by Dr.Himanta Biswa Sarma, the incumbent Chief Minister of Assam.

The complainant has submitted an affidavit (Annexure-4) showing compliance of the provisions of Sec 154(1) and sec 154(3), Cr.P.C as mandated under law laid down by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Priyanka Srivastava Vs State of Uttar Pradesh, (2015) 6 SCC 287.

The complainant has also submitted copies of the ejahar dated 29/12/2021 lodged u/s 154(1) Cr.P.C. filed before the Officer-in-Charge, Dispur Police Station as Annexure 2 and the application u/s 154(3) Cr.P.C. filed before the Deputy Commissioner of Police (East) dated 12/01/2022 as Annexure 3.

I have gone through the documents annexed. Heard the Ld. Counsel for the complainant.

The Ld. Counsel for the complainant has submitted that despite the compliance of sec 154(1) and 154(3) of Cr.P.C., the police has not registered the FIR and as such prayed for passing necessary direction to the police to register the FIR.

I have considered the submission put forward by the Ld. Counsel for the complainant.

It is pertinent to mention here that in Lalita Kumari vs State of Uttar Pradesh, (2014) 2 SCC 1, the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India has unequivocally held that it is mandatory to register an FIR u/s 154 of the

Cr.P.C., if the information discloses the commission of a cognizable offence.

The instant petition u/s 156(3) Cr.P.C. filed by the complainant is in the format of a complaint as per sec 2(d) of Cr.P.C. The complainant alleges that Dr.Himanta Biswa Sarma made inflammatory speech on 10.12.2021 at Morigaon designed to flare up communal passion which intended to disturb the already fragile social and communal fabric of the state. The speech was allegedly circulated via Electronic and Social Media across the State. The extract of the speech delivered by Dr.Himanta Biswa Sarma has been submitted as Annexure 1. Prima facie the petition discloses commission of a cognizable offence.

The speech, it has been alleged, was transmitted electronically across entire Assam and in such a situation, territorial fetters did not exist for the O.C., Dispur P.S. to register the FIR. It was, thus, mandatory for the police to have registered the FIR and investigate the case.

The veracity of the allegations is not something which can be enquired prior to the registration of the FIR. By failing to even register the FIR, it appears that the police has failed in the discharge of its duty.

Hence, this Court is of the considered opinion that it is a fit case to invoke Sec 156(3) of Cr.P.C.

Before proceeding further, an important question, however has come to my mind. Is sanction required even for the purpose of passing a direction under sec 156(3) of Cr.P.C, considering the fact that sanction under sec 196(1) Cr.P.C. is required for prosecution of offence punishable under sec 153A of IPC and sanction under sec 197 of Cr.P.C. would be required for prosecuting the incumbent Chief Minister of a State?

Heard the Ld. Counsel for the complainant on this point.

The Ld. Counsel for the complainant has humbly submitted that the necessity of a sanction whether under sec 196 or 197 of Cr.P.C would become operation only at the stage of cognizance and not at the stage of registration of an FIR.

It is important to mention here that the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India has held in Anil Kumar vs. M.K.Aiyappa, (2013) 10 SCC 705 that the Special Judge/Magistrate cannot refer a matter u/s 156(3) against a

 

public servant without a valid sanction order. This requirement of sanction even for purpose of invoking section 156(3) of Cr.P.C. has since been questioned and the matter has been referred to a larger bench in Manju Surana vs. Sunil Arora &Ors. (2018) 5 SCC 557.

The Ld. Counsel for the complainant has fairly pointed out that this dictum was in the context of necessity of sanction u/s 19 of Prevention of Corruption Act vis a vis commission of offences under the said Act. It does not apply for commission of offences under the Indian Penal Code or in respect of necessity of sanction required under sec 196 and/or Section 197 of Cr.P.C.

The contention of the Ld. Counsel for the complainant finds validation in a decision by a Three Judges Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Ramdev Food Products Ltd. vs. State of Gujrat, AIR 2015 SC 1742 where the Hon’ble Apex Court has made it crystal clear that the observations in Anil Kumar (supra) apply only to the category of cases mentioned in Para 120.6 in Lalita Kumari (supra). These cases are as follows:

  1. Matrimonial disputes/family disputes.
  2. Commercial offences. (c)Medical Negligence cases.
  1. Corruption cases.
  2. Cases where there is abnormal delay/laches in initiating criminal prosecution, for example, over 3 months delay in reporting the matter without satisfactorily explaining the delay.

The case in hand does not fall under any of the aforesaid categories. Law as laid down by the Hon’ble Supreme Court is very clear on this point.

Therefore, I am of the considered opinion that the necessity of  sanction in respect of offences under Section 153, 153A IPC, allegedly committed by the present Chief Minister of Assam, Dr.Himanta Biswa Sarma will not arise at pre-cognizance stage under section 156(3) of Cr.P.C.

After considering all aspects, the prayer under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. is allowed. The O.C. Dispur P.S. is directed to register a case on the allegations mentioned in the complaint and investigate the matter fairly and to submit the Final Form at the earliest.

Office to make necessary arrangements for sending the petition u/s 156(3) Cr.P.C. along with a copy of the instant order to the O.C. Dispur

P.S. for information and compliance.

A copy of the case record be retained for further reference. This case stands disposed with the aforesaid direction.

Author info

AT News's picture

Assam Times Staff. editor@assamtimes.org

Add new comment

Random Stories

Two unidentified dead body recovered at Golaghat

21 Oct 2011 - 1:49am | Ritupallab Saikia
An unidentified dead body of a young man of about 30 years of age was recovered from a railway track near Donbosco School in Golaghat today at around 6.30 am. The body was found wearing a white shirt...

Unidentified deadbody found at Singahadwar

27 Jun 2013 - 4:21pm | SK Hasan
An unidentified deadbody of a middle aged women found near Sivasagar Simaluguri road at 4 AM on Thursday. Local residents noticed the deadbody in the morning and informed it to the Cherakapar Police...

Assam boxer waiting to strike gold

26 Nov 2017 - 3:51pm | AT News
GUWAHATI: A young boxing talent from Assam is waiting to steal the thunder at the Youth World Boxing Championship in Guwahati on Sunday.She is none other than Angshunita Boro who is taking on Dynnik...

24 relief camps in Kokrajhar

26 Dec 2014 - 7:12am | Hantigiri Narzary
Caught in a gory cycle of violence, around 10,570 panic stricken people in Kokrajhar district have been taking shelter in 24 relief camps.   Gossaigaon sub division has alone 15 camps...

Other Contents by Author

In a landmark move, participants of the International Conclave on Water, Hill Lives, and Future, convened in Shillong on February 9th and 10th, 2024, have jointly adopted the "Shillong Declaration." This declaration underscores the critical interlinkages between water resources and hill ecosystems, emphasizing a holistic approach towards achieving sustainable development in these regions.   The vital role of water as a critical resource and the need for enhanced resilience around water in hilly terrains, as underscored by the declining water table and spring water levels, waning traditional water systems, retreating, and polluting rivers, changing rainfall patterns, increase...
Jaisalmer, Rajasthan: Today marks the commencement of the 3rd edition of Maru Manthan, a transformative forum orchestrated by the Desert Resource Centre and Urmul, in collaboration with desert communities. Held on February 9th and 10th, 2024, in the heart of Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, Maru Manthan stands as a beacon for celebrating the indomitable spirit of the desert and fostering sustainable solutions amidst its challenges. The forum draws together an illustrious lineup of organizations and individuals dedicated to desert conservation and community empowerment. Representatives from esteemed entities such as the Foundation for Ecological Security, Ministry of Lowlands & Irrigation (...
The 'Uttar Purvi Mahotsav 2024', a five-day cultural extravaganza showcasing Northeast India's richness, kicks off on January 13 at Bharat Mandapam. Organized by the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) and NEHHDC, the festival aims to display diverse arts, crafts, and cultures, fostering economic opportunities. With 250 participants including weavers, farmers, and entrepreneurs, the event features panel discussions, buyer-seller meets, traditional performances, and a focus on women's roles in regional development. Highlighting the youth's contribution and challenges, the festival aims to explore how they can shape India's economic landscape. Additionally, specialized...
In a bid to empower the youth against the perils of single-use plastics, the UNEP Tide Turners Plastic Challenge made significant strides in Assam. The WWF-India, alongside UNEP, orchestrated a pivotal Teachers’ Training Program on December 19th, 2023, at Maharishi Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School in Silpukhuri. This initiative, a global endeavor ongoing since 2019, aims to cultivate leadership qualities among the youth to combat the menace of plastic pollution. WWF-India has taken the helm as the knowledge and implementing partner, customizing and executing the program's intricacies across the country. The training session witnessed the active participation of teachers from 37...
December 10, 2023, saw the Indigenous Peoples'  of Mung-Dun-Chun-Kham, Assam, Northeast, joined by the Jatiatabad Punar Nirman Samiti, observe World Human Rights Day in diverse regions of the state. The programme was held at Guwahati Press Club. A discussion titled "Human Rights and Northeast Region" was arranged. Notable speakers, including Pradeep Gogoi, Vice President of the ULFA (Discussion faction), L. Khongsai, President of Assam Kuki Welfare Society, N.G. Sanahaal Singha, President of Assam Manipuri Students' Association, Mrinal Gohain, Thinker, Meishnam Bhagat Singha, Paotinlen Chongloui, human rights activist, Shaheen Ahmed, academic and researcher, Rajkumar Baishya,...
Guwahati: The Indigenous peoples of Mung-Dun-Chun-Kham, Assam, North East India (IPMDCKANEI) came together on Assam Divas (Sukafa Divas) to address critical issues impacting their communities. Held at the Conference Hall, Media Trust', Rup Nagar, Guwahati, the day-long program included a significant round table conference featuring ethnic activists from Assam, Tripura, Manipur, and Nagaland. The event commenced with tributes to historical figures, Chao Pha Chao lung Sukafa and Bodofa Upendra Nath Brahma, followed by intense discussions on the challenges confronting indigenous groups in North East India. Representatives from various organizations including the United Bodo Peoples...
Representatives from various indigenous groups and environmental organizations convened in Gangtok, Sikkim, for the North East India Meet on Free Flowing Rivers. The gathering, hosted by the Affected Citizens of Teesta, Centre for Research and Advocacy (Manipur), and the Borok Peoples Human Rights Organization, concluded with a significant resolution aimed at safeguarding the region's rivers and biodiversity. "We recognize the intrinsic rights of rivers to flow freely and the vital relationship between indigenous communities and their natural resources," emphasized a spokesperson from the conference. The Teesta Declaration outlined pressing concerns regarding the construction of...
Guwahati: The commencement of preliminary work on the flyover linking the Dighalipukhuri point with the Bamunimaidan area has sparked concerns among the media fraternity in Guwahati. The ongoing development, anticipated to be the longest flyover in Assam stretching over six kilometers and set for completion by 2026, has raised issues for the city's Press Club situated in the Ambari locality. As construction gears up, the Press Club faces a significant reduction in its working space due to the flyover's expansion. This reduction is poised to create parking challenges for members and visitors alike during and after the construction phase, prompting the Journalists' Forum Assam (JFA) to...
In a resolute display of solidarity and resilience, over 5,000 women hailing from the Kuki-Zomi-Hmar-Mizo communities congregated at Peace Ground, Tuibuong, Lamka, Churachandpur in Manipur, kickstarting the annual 16 Days Activism on Violence Against Women. Orchestrated by the Women of Lamka, the event was a fervent call for justice and a poignant outcry against the distressing instances of gender-based violence (GBV) that have plagued the state. Led by the indomitable Ngaineikim from Kuki Women organization for human rights, the program's inauguration was a tapestry of impassioned speeches, stirring presentations, and solemn moments dedicated to the victims. Distinguished figures such...
Guwahati: The Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) has voiced its deep concern regarding the recent surge in verbal assaults on journalists by various individuals. In response, the forum calls upon the State's media community to stand united in the face of adversity. In a released statement, the forum highlighted the disparaging remarks made by AIUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal towards video journalists, where he suggested that they should face physical violence. “While we vehemently denounce Ajmal's stance and urge for appropriate actions against the politician, we implore media professionals to demonstrate unity, integrity, and professionalism in their workplaces,” remarked JFA president Rupam...