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Plea in HC against constitution of Police Complaint Authority in Delhi

A police officer has moved a plea in the Delhi High Court challenging the constitution of the Police Complaint Authority (PCA) and the proceedings initiated by it against him for allegedly torturing and beating up a scheduled caste student inside police station premises.

The petitioner, who is a station house officer (SHO), has contended that the PCA set up by the Delhi government in 2017 was not in consonance with the Supreme Court's 2006 direction to set up such a body each at the state and district levels.

The matter was listed before a bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar, but was not heard as lawyers had abstained from work protesting injuries caused to some advocates in a clash between them and police officers at Tis Hazari district court on Saturday.

According to the petition, the apex court had directed that the state-level PCA would deal with complaints against officers of the rank of superintendent of police and above, while the district-level body would address complaints against officers up to the rank of deputy superintendent of police.

Mahaveer Prasad Saini, the SHO of Adarsh Nagar police station, has also sought quashing of the proceedings initiated against him by the PCA which had on September 2 taken suo motu cognisance of news reports regarding the alleged assault of a scheduled caste law student by policemen inside the station premises.

He has said that an FIR was registered on October 1 on the student's complaint and is being investigated by the police while the National Commission for Scheduled Caste is also looking into the matter, and therefore, there was no need for the PCA to suo motu initiate proceedings against him.

According to the student's complaint, he was tortured and assaulted by Saini and five other officers inside the police station premises.