Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs

Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs
Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs
Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs
Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs

Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs

Punjab and Haryana High Court Takes Strong Action Against Mentioning Religion in FIRs image/iStock

High Court Directs Haryana Police Chief to Address Controversial Practice

Religious Mention in FIRs: A Serious Concern

In a significant development, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has expressed its deep concern over the inclusion of an individual’s religion in a First Information Report (FIR). The court has taken a firm stance on this issue and has directed the Chief of Haryana Police to submit an affidavit outlining corrective actions to be taken by September 18. This directive comes in response to a petition related to a monetary dispute, and it underscores the court’s commitment to upholding the principles of fairness and non-discrimination.

Echoes of a Similar Issue in Punjab

Justice Jasgurpreet Singh Puri, presiding over the case, drew attention to a similar problem that had previously arisen in the neighboring state of Punjab. In Punjab, the Director General of Police (DGP) had taken concrete steps to curtail the practice of mentioning an individual’s religion in FIRs. The court expressed deep concern about the recurrence of this issue, emphasizing the gravity of mentioning religion in legal documents.

Historical Context of the Issue

The court’s reaction builds on previous actions taken by it in relation to caste-based information in FIRs and other police proceedings. While the court had previously addressed the matter of including a person’s caste in FIRs, it is now focusing on the inclusion of religion in these documents. This demonstrates the court’s commitment to safeguarding the fundamental rights and dignity of individuals, regardless of their religious or caste background.

The Punjab DGP’s Preventive Measures

The court highlighted that in the State of Punjab, steps were taken to rectify this situation. The Punjab DGP had submitted an affidavit on September 19, 2022, outlining the measures being undertaken to ensure that religion would no longer be mentioned in FIRs or related police proceedings. This action was aimed at aligning police practices with principles of non-discrimination and equal treatment under the law.

Haryana’s Path Forward

Justice Puri issued a clear directive to the Haryana Director General of Police. The court has urged the Haryana DGP to follow in the footsteps of their Punjab counterpart and submit an affidavit by September 18. This affidavit should outline the specific corrective actions that will be implemented to eradicate the practice of mentioning religion in FIRs and related police documents in Haryana.

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