Bombay HC Quashes FIR Against British National Who Was Detained At Mumbai Airport For Carrying Satellite Phone
The Bombay High Court has quashed the FIR registered against a British National for carrying a Satellite Phone.
The bench of Justice Revati Mohite Dere and Justice Prithviraj K. Chavan observed that Section 155(2) Cr.PC states that when information relating to a non-cognizable offence is received, the police officer cannot commence with the investigation, without securing an order from the concerned Magistrate.
The Court noted that in the instant case, appropriate orders have not been obtained from the concerned Magistrate, as required under Section 155(2) Cr.PC.
In this case, the petitioner-British national was a Senior Executive of Offshore Petroleum Industry Training Organization.
The petitioner was employed with the said Company from March 2014 to November 2020 and was regularly attending the training centers for the purpose of carrying out audits.
According to the petitioner, as per the Company protocol, he was carrying a Satellite Phone which was supposed to be switched off during his stay and was to use the same, only in case of emergency.
As per the petitioner, he never used the Satellite Phone.
After completing his training, the petitioner was detained at the Mumbai International Airport, for the alleged violation of Section 6 of the Indian Wireless Telegraphy Act read with Section 20 of the Indian Telegraph Act.
Pursuant thereto, the police registered the aforesaid FIR, as against the petitioner and after investigation filed the charge-sheet.
Advocate Shine Mohammad appeared for the petitioner whereas P. P. Shinde, A.P.P appeared for the Respondent – State.
The Court noted that under Section 155(2) Cr.PC., the concerned police must obtain an order from a Magistrate having power to try the case or commit such a case for trial.
"Admittedly, the same has not been done by the police i.e. the appropriate orders have not been obtained from the concerned Magistrate, as required under Section 155(2) Cr.PC. Having regard to the same, the police could not have lodged the FIR, much less, filed a charge-sheet.", the Court observed.
Thus the Court quashed the FIR registered against the petitioner.
Cause Title- Anderson Mark Richard v. State of Maharashtra