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AP High Court pulls up state DGP

A division bench, comprising Justices Rakesh Kumar and J Uma Devi, also remarked that the (state) government would face problems if such a situation continued. The judges stated this during a hearing on a writ petition filed by Sunkara Narayana Swamy of East Godavari district, seeking release of his kin Pottipothu Venkataraju from the "illegal detention" of police.

PTI | Amaravati | Updated: 14-09-2020 21:35 IST | Created: 14-09-2020 21:17 IST
AP High Court pulls up state DGP
Representative image. Image Credit: ANI

The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Monday pulled up state Director General of Police Damodar Gautam Sawang and remarked that he should resign if he could not control the police, their observation coming over a case of alleged illegal detention of a man by police. A division bench, comprising Justices Rakesh Kumar and J Uma Devi, also remarked that the (state) government would face problems if such a situation continued.

The judges stated this during a hearing on a writ petition filed by Sunkara Narayana Swamy of East Godavari district, seeking release of his kin Pottipothu Venkataraju from the "illegal detention" of police. The DGP, though, was not present when the bench made the remarks.

The petitioner alleged that the Amalapuram police in East Godavari district illegally took Venkataraju into custody on September 6 over a civil issue pertaining to Visakhapatnam jurisdiction. The petition was filed in the High Court on September 9 and came up for hearing before the division bench on Monday.

The judges came down heavily on DGP Sawang, saying the "rule of law" was not being implemented in Andhra Pradesh. "We had summoned the DGP to the court (for personal appearance) many times in the past, but there appears to be no change. If the situation continues like this, it will put the government in trouble," the judges said.

The judges recalled that in at least three other cases the High Court ordered a judicial probe and in all those cases the wrongdoing of the police was established. "Police system in the state seems to be going off the track. He (the DGP) should resign if he cant control the police, the division bench said.

The court said it was not possible to order a CBI probe in every case. Hearing on the writ petition will continue on Tuesday.

This was not the first time DGP Sawang faced the wrath of the High Court. In March this year, a division bench, headed by Chief Justice J K Maheshwari, pulled up the DGP over the detention of Telugu Desam Party president N Chandrababu Naiduat Visakhapatnam airport on February 27 after taking him into preventive custody under Section 151 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

When the DGP appeared in person on the summons of the court, the Chief Justice had made the former read out Section 151 Cr P C in open court. The DGP also faced the courts wrath in another case relating to the police action against protesters in capital Amaravati.


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