Police officers are not required to ask for physical favors or material goods: Supreme Court

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Hearing to the case of CISF and others. vs Santosh Kumar Pandey where a CISF personnel was dismissed for harassing a couple at night, the Supreme Court observed that police officers are not required to do moral policing.

An appeal was filed by the CISF (Santosh Kumar Pandey) against a judgment given by the Gujarat High Court directing to reinstatement in service with 50% back wages from the date of his removal. The Supreme Court bench comprising Justice JK Maheshwari and Justice Sanjiv Khanna said that the High Court decision fails to apply the law of judicial review and also it fails to pass the muster of Wednesbury principles.

The incident took place at the Greenbelt area of the IPCL Township in Gujarat’s Vadodara, where a couple passing on bike was stopped by CISF and asked the complainant to allow him to spend some time with his fiancé. The couple left the place by giving wrist watch to the officer whereas a departmental inquiry was conducted against CISF personnel resulting in his dismissal from service.

The top Court stated that no proper evaluation was done by the High Court and the facts in the case were startling and distressing. The Supreme Court further justified that “Santosh Kumar Pandey is not a police officer and even police officers are not required to do moral policing, ask for physical favor or material goods”.

The impugned judgment of the High Court was set aside and order of removal from service by the disciplinary authority was upheld.