JAMMU, Jan 4: Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Kathua Amarjeet Singh Langeh has cautioned police against interfering in the civil suit.
This significant direction has been passed in a dispute in which police seeks attachment of shops under Section 145 CrPC.
After hearing Senior Prosecuting Officer for the State, the CJM observed, “it needs no reiteration that while proceeding to draw preliminary order under Section 145 of CrPC, it is imperative for a Magistrate, in the first place, to record the satisfaction about existence of dispute over immovable property inter-se the parties as would cause imminent breach of peace”.
“Furthermore, if Sections 145 and 146 of Code of Criminal Procedure are read as part of single scheme, it is clear that as long as there is no likelihood of breach of peace, attachment of immovable property cannot be countenanced”, the CJM said, adding “facts adduced in the petition at hand clearly indicate that an act of skullduggery was aimed at dispossession of three occupants from three shops where they used to run business”.
“From the narrative of the petitioner as also from his preliminary statement, it is clear that while an unscrupulous attempt was made to forcibly dispossess non-applicants from the possession of shops in question, no commotion and violence by inhabitants from the vicinity, seems to have erupted”, the court said, adding “there is, thus, no prima-facie evidence that public was stirred to anger or inhabitants in the neighbourhood were deprived of peace and quiet by any alarm whatsoever”.
“In these circumstances, an act of crime with regard to which first information report stands registered against the culprits, cannot in my considered opinion be overstated to be an event/happening that may culminate in breach of peace”, the CJM said, adding “if there are five FIRs registered against different culprits, the advisable course for police would be to throw its weight behind fair investigation and submit the result for judicial determination at the earliest instead of giving the impression of poking its nose into the civil dispute inter-se the parties”.
“Fairness of law enforcing agency is judged not on how readily it chooses a convenient path but how courageously does it distance itself from individual stake holders and calls a spade by bringing culprits to justice. The tendency of the litigants to convert purely civil dispute into criminal cases is not only deprecated but frowned at by law”, the CJM said, adding “police must guard itself against this tendency”.
With these observations, court dismissed the application.