The Supreme Court has requested all the High Courts to register suo motu Public Interest Litigations (PILs) regarding the filling up of the large number of vacancies in the different posts in the police forces in the respective states.
The bench comprising Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Sanjiv Khanna directed the registry to transfer records pertaining to a writ petition filed in this regard to respective High Courts.
The writ petition was filed by Manish Kumar in 2013, contending that the law and order situation has deteriorated on account of the existence of large number of vacancies, in the police service at all levels. Thereafter, upon directions of the court, many states have filed affidavit and status reports on the matter.
Later, the writ petition was amended, and now prays for following reliefs:
- Direction to all the States & Union Territories to constitute Police Commission to deal with allegation of police action, redressal of grievances of police and to make recommendations for the welfare of police force.
- Directions to the States to formulate and implement the guidelines for prevention and control of violent mass agitations and destruction of life & property, in terms of the guidelines suggested by this Hon'ble Court in the decision reported as 2009(5)SCC 212.
- Directions to the States and Union Territories to fill up the vacant posts in the Police and State Armed forces so that the police forces does not remain overburdened.
- Directions to all the States and Union Territories to provide for periodic training and upgradation of police force and to fix the working hours for the police personnel.
- Direction to the Union of India to prescribe guidelines for the Media Reporting of the violent mass agitation and police action for prevention and control thereof.
- Order or Direction restraining the States from drawing a presumption against the action of police acting under the constitutional and statutory obligations.
When this matter was taken up last week, the bench observed:
"From the material on record and the Orders passed by this Court from time to time it appears that one of the central issues canvassed till date is the filling up of the large number of vacancies in the different posts in the police forces in the States. In this regard detailed affidavits have been filed by a large number of States. In view of the factual matrix at some point of time it was in the contemplation of the Court that the matter be sent to High Court(s) for effective monitoring instead of this Court continuing with the present writ petition. Issue and problems are State specific and can be appropriately dealt with by the respective High Courts."
The court then ordered:
"We are of the view that the records pertaining to each of the States including affidavits etc. be sent by the Supreme Court Registry to the Registry of the concerned High Courts with a request to Hon'ble the Chief Justice of the High Court to entertain the matter on the Judicial Side as suo motu Public Interest Litigation and monitor the prayers made from time to time."