Srinivas B.V. v. State of Assam

The Cyber Blog IndiaCase Summary

Quashing of FIR in a case involving mental and sexual harassment by a political superior

Srinivas B.V. v. State of Assam
(2023) 3 GLT 424
In the High Court of Gauhati
Crl. Pet. 377/2023
Before Justice Ajit Borthakur
Decided on May 04, 2023

Relevancy of the Case: Quashing of FIR in a case involving mental and sexual harassment by a political superior

Statutes and Provisions Involved

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 67)
  • The Indian Penal Code, 1860 (Section 294, 341, 352, 254, 354A, 506, 509)
  • The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (Section 482)

Relevant Facts of the Case

  • The second respondent, former Assam Youth Congress President, is the original complainant in the present case. The petitioner is the President of the Indian Youth Congress.
  • The complainant alleges that the petitioner has consistently harassed her mentally by using sexist and slang words. Further, he also threatened her with dire consequences if she complained about this to the party’s higher authorities.
  • While attending a plenary session in Raipur, the petitioner heckled the complainant by holding her arms and threatened her by using slang words.
  • She also received various threatening messages over electronic means while staying at Guwahati from before and after the said incident in Raipur.

Prominent Arguments by the Advocates

  • The petitioner’s counsel highlighted the two-month delay in filing the FIR. He contended that the complainant’s case was malafide and only to advance political benefits.
  • The prosecution’s counsel submitted that the petitioner had continuously harassed the complainant, both physically and electronically, for six months before filing the FIR. Moreover, there is no limitation period for filing an FIR. A court must not use its powers under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, to interfere with the police investigation.

Opinion of the Bench

  • The complaint makes a prima facie case, attracting offences under the Indian Penal Code, 1860. The Dispur Police Station has jurisdiction to register the FIR.
  • Electronic threats made by the petitioner are cognisable under Section 67 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

Final Decision

  • The court dismissed the petition.

Nikita D’Lima, an undergraduate student at NMIMS School of Law, Navi Mumbai, and Risha Thomre Rajani, an undergraduate student at NMIMS Kirit P. Mehta School of Law, Mumbai, prepared this case summary during their internship with The Cyber Blog India in May/June 2023.