Delhi HC notice to police over sacked court official’s plea against FIR

Delhi HC notice to police over sacked court official’s plea against FIR

The Delhi High Court (File Photo)

The Delhi High Court has sought to know the police’s stand on a sacked court official’s plea for quashing of an FIR against him for allegedly tampering with a Supreme Court order in a contempt case against Reliance Communications chief Anil Ambani.

Justice Suresh Kumar Kait issued a notice to Delhi Police on Tapan Kumar Chakraborty’s plea, claiming he has been implicated in the case on the sole pretext of some error in court proceedings.

On January 7 last year, a Supreme Court bench rejected Ambani’s plea for exemption from personal appearance in the contempt of court case stemming from Reliance Communications’ failure to pay back Rs 550 crore to Swedish telecom major Ericsson.

The SC had refused to allow the exemption, but the order uploaded on the website suggested otherwise. The discrepancy was noticed by the Ericsson lawyer and the corrected order was uploaded two days later.

After the discrepancy was discovered, the bench announced it had instituted an inquiry into the episode. The inquiry revealed that court officials Chakraborty and Manav Sharma had allegedly taken down the order in shorthand and later transcribed it and hence the mix-up was “not accidental” but “deliberate”.

Chakraborty and Sharma were sacked by the SC in February 2019 after it was first alleged that they had tampered with the court order. They were subsequently booked for cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy. Chakraborty has pleaded that a court master cannot be made criminally liable for an error in court proceedings when the same is later verified not only by the judges concerned but also by various levels of registrars.