The Delhi Police has informed the High Court that it is carrying out periodic checks throughout the national capital to ensure that no barricade remains unmanned and that it will make all possible endeavours to keep all the barricades manned.
Taking noting of the submission, a division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad disposed of a suo moto public interest litigation registered by the court last year in respect of the unmanned barricades.
A status report was filed by the Delhi Police on January 6 stating that disciplinary action was initiated in 51 cases against concerned staff or SHOs for violating standing order issued in March 2022.
It added that barricades are being put up at 773 locations, out of which 714 are manned by the police staff and barricades in remaining 59 locations or colonies are being manned by the RWA staff.
“The Night Checking Officers also check all the barricades placed in the area and if any unmanned barricade is found, information is required to be immediately forwarded to the District Control Room and also to the concerned SHO. The night patrolling staff has also been directed to inform the SHOs about it so that the unmanned barricades are immediately removed,” the report states.
An assurance was given by DCP South East District regarding strict compliance of the Standing Order issued by the Delhi Police Headquarters and a circular dated September 15, 2022 issued by the Commissioner of Police.
“In light of the aforesaid, no further orders are required to be passed in the matter. The petition is disposed of, along with pending application(s), if any,” the court said.
A previous status report filed in the matter under the signatures of DCP Legal stated that a detailed standing order was revised, wherein it was instructed that under no circumstances the barricades should be left unmanned.
The order stated that barricades should be removed from the carriageway and footpath when not in use so that they don’t cause any traffic hindrance or become a cause of potential hazard for motorists and pedestrians.
Delhi Police had previously also taken the court through to a letter dated March 4, 2022 stating that the staff has been sensitized for ensuring meticulous compliance of directions contained in the standing order.
The Police in September last year informed the court that the complaints relating to unattended barricades can be immediately reported on 112 helpline or Twitter by tagging social media handles of the traffic police.
The matter was registered last year as a PIL on the basis of a letter addressed by one On Prakash Goel. In the letter, which was also addressed to the Prime Minister, grievances were raised with respect to setting up of unmanned barricades in the areas in question.
Om Prakash had argued that such unmanned barricades serve no purpose and are in fact causing blockades of free flow of traffic, resulting in misery and harassment to vehicle owners and general public.
IN THE HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI
W.P.(C) 3167/2022 & CM APPLs. 18228/2022, 39036/2022
COURT ON ITS OWN MOTION ….. Petitioner
THE COMMISSIONER OF POLICE AND ORS ….. Respondents
Through: Mr. Sanjay Lao, Standing Counsel
(Criminal) with Ms. Supriya Manan,
Mr. Kirtiman Singh, CGSC with Mr.
Waize Ali Noor, Ms. Shreya
Vedantika Mehra, Mr. Madhav Bajaj,
Ms. Kunjala Bhardwaj, Ms. Vidhi
Jain and Ms. Durgesh Nandani,
Advocates for UOI.
Mr. Arun Panwar, Mr. Pradyumn
Rao, Mr. Tapesh Raghav, Ms. Mehak
Rankawat, Advocates for Mr. Santosh
Kumar Tripathi, SC for GNCTD.
Mr. Ajjay Aroraa, Standing Counsel
for MCD with Mr. Kapil Dutta and
Mr. Anuj Bhargava, Advocates.
Ms. Isha Pandey, DCP/South East
Distt. With Mr. Pradeep, ASI, Mr.
Surya Prakash, SHO and Mr. Rakesh
HON’BLE THE CHIEF JUSTICE
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE SUBRAMONIUM PRASAD
O R D E R
1. The present petition has been registered as a Public Interest Litigation on the basis of a letter dated 10.12.2021 received from one Om Prakash Goyal, in respect of the unmanned barricades which are allegedly causing public nuisance.
2. This Court has passed various orders from time to time in the matter. It has been informed that the barricades whether manned or unmanned are not causing any public nuisance and that the Delhi Police is making all possible endeavours to ensure that the barricades are placed at various points, keeping in view the Standing Order No.22/2022 dated 31.03.2022 issued by the Delhi Police Headquarters.
3. On the last date of hearing i.e., 14.11.2022, the Delhi Police was directed to file a status report in respect of manned and unmanned barricades. A detailed and exhaustive status report dated 06.01.2023 has been filed by the Delhi Police in the matter. The relevant portion of the said status report reads as under:
“1. That the present Status Report is being filed in compliance of order passed by this Hon’ble Court on 14.11.2022 in the above captioned matter.
2. That as regards to the violation of Standing Order pointed out by the Hon ble Court, it is submitted
that report has been called from all District DCsP and disciplinary action in 51 cases has been initiated against the concerned staff/SHOs where violation of directions of the Standing Order has been found. Detail of actions taken in all the above incidents is placed as Annexure A.
3. That as directed by the Hon’ble Court, detail report has also been called from all the District DCsP with respect to the number of barricades put up in each police station, being manned by the Delhi Police and the RWAs. As per reports, barricades are being put up at 773 locations by the Delhi Police, out of which 714 are manned by Delhi Police staff and barricades at 59 locations/colonies are being manned by the staff of respective RWAs. Detail of barricades police station wise is placed as Annexure B.
4. That, the night patrolling staff also checks whether any barricade is lying unmanned in their area. The Night Checking Officers also check all the barricades placed in the area and if any unmanned barricade is found, information is required to be immediately forwarded to the District Control Room and also to the concerned SHO. The night patrolling staff has also been directed to inform the SHOs about it so that the unmanned barricade are immediately removed.
5. That all DCsP/ACsP and SHOs have again been directed to strictly comply with the directions issued vide Standing Order No 22/2022 dated 31.03.2022 issued by PHQ and Circular No 29/2022 dated 15.09.2022 issued by Joint CP/Crime and to ensure that barricades put up by Delhi Police or the RWAs, shall always be manned and under no circumstance it shall remain unmanned.
6. That meetings with the Joint CsP/Addl CsP Ranges and District DCsP were also taken to sensitize them about the directions of the Hon’ble Court and for ensuring that no barricades should be left unmanned.
4. The status report reveals that for violation of Standing Order No.22/2022 disciplinary action in 51 cases has been initiated against the concerned Staff/SHOs and all barricades which are in place in Delhi are being manned by Delhi Police and the Residential Welfare Associations (RWAs). It is stated that the barricades have been put up at 773 locations by the Delhi Police, out of which 714 are being manned by Delhi Police staff and barricades at 59 locations/colonies are being manned by the staff of respective RWAs.
5. It has also been brought to the notice of this Court that the Standing Order No.22/2022 dated 31.03.2022 has been issued by Delhi Police Headquarters and the Circular No.29/2022 dated 15.09.2022 has been issued by the Commissioner of Police/Crime, in order to ensure that the barricades put up by the Delhi Police or by the RWAs shall always remain manned, and under no circumstances it shall remain unmanned.
6. Ms. Isha Pandey, DCP/South East District is present in the Court today. She has assured this Court of strict compliance of the Standing Order No.22/2022 dated 31.03.2022 issued by Delhi Police Headquarters and the Circular No.29/2022 dated 15.09.2022 issued by the Commissioner of Police/Crime. She has also stated that periodic checks are also being carried out throughout Delhi to ensure that no barricade remains unmanned and the Delhi Police shall also make all possible endeavours to keep all the barricades manned.
7. In light of the aforesaid, no further orders are required to be passed in the matter.
8. The petition is disposed of, along with pending application(s), if any.
SATISH CHANDRA SHARMA, CJ
SUBRAMONIUM PRASAD, J
JANUARY 09, 2023