The Supreme Court has given an important decision regarding corrupt officials. After this decision, no officer can challenge the old case registered against him by saying that it was registered without permission from the government.
The Constitution bench of the Supreme Court has made it clear that even before 2014, the government’s permission was not necessary to arrest him by filing a corruption case against him.
What was the decision of 2014?
In 2014, the Supreme Court had repealed the legal provision due to which the CBI had to seek government permission before investigating or arresting senior officials. Section 6A, which was added in 2003 in the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act (DSPE Act), provided that the approval of the Central Government would have to be taken before investigating corruption cases against officers of the rank of Joint Secretary and above. In 2014, the Supreme Court had canceled this provision in the decision given in the case ‘Subramanian Swamy vs. CBI Director’.
What is the main issue?
RR Kishore, working as Chief District Medical Officer in Delhi, was arrested by CBI in 2004. Kishore was caught red handed by CBI while taking bribe. He challenged his arrest in the Delhi High Court saying that under Section 6A of the DSPE Act, government approval was necessary before his arrest.
Delhi High Court admitted in its order that CBI should have taken permission from the competent authority before making the arrest, but the High Court did not quash the case registered against RR Kishore. In 2007, CBI challenged this order in the Supreme Court.
The status of old cases is now clear
Even before the hearing on CBI’s appeal was completed, the Supreme Court gave a big decision in another case in 2014. This decision ended the provision of law due to which officers sought protection from arrest, but there was no clarity on what effect it would have on cases filed before 2014.
Now the Constitution Bench has unanimously accepted that Section 6A of the DSPE Act will never be considered applicable. Therefore, no relief can be sought on the basis of this section even in the cases registered between 2003 and 2014. This decision of the 5-member Constitution bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Sanjeev Khanna, Abhay S Oka, Vikram Nath and JK Maheshwari is being considered a big blow for the officers facing corruption cases.