The claim that a senior police officer had made up a false WhatsApp profile of a former chief justice of the Patna High Court—who is currently a top court judge—in order to receive unfair advantages was recently given serious consideration by the Supreme Court.
Two judges were accused of aiding the police officer in his attempt to forum shop, and this information was brought to the Supreme Court’s attention.
Judges Aniruddha Bose, Ahsanuddin Amanullah, and Augustine George Masih dismissed Aditya Kumar, the Indian Police Service (IPS) officer in question,’s application for anticipatory bail, stating that they felt this was a more important matter that could not be ignored.
“This Court will undoubtedly continue to consider the materials uncovered, as they pertain to both preserving public confidence in the system as a whole and preserving the integrity of judicial procedures. The order said, “We firmly believe that additional directions are required.”
The Patna High Court had already forwarded the case against the two judges to the Chief Justice while rejecting Kumar’s request for pre-arrest bail. Now, the highest court has ordered the Patna High Court to inform it of the actions taken against the two accused judicial personnel.
“Hon’ble the Chief Justice for taking appropriate decision on the administrative side” regarding all such facts which have been noted in the impugned judgment, the Registrar General of the Patna High Court is directed to submit, in a sealed cover, complete details of what action the High Court has taken, along with copies of relevant documents,” the Supreme Court order stated.
On December 12, the next hearing date, the supreme court further mandated that the Bihar Police’s Economic Office Unit (EOW) provide the whole case diary of the associated criminal case in a sealed cover.
The bail petition was filed by Kumar, a Superintendent of Police-rank officer. It is claimed that Kumar and co-accused Abhishek Agrawal @ Abhishek Bholpalaka devised a scheme to trick the then-Director General of Police (DGP) in Bihar by making a fake WhatsApp account with the image of the then-Chief Justice Sanjay Karol, who is currently a judge on the Supreme Court.
According to reports, the co-accused used to call the DGP on behalf of the Chief Justice of the High Court in an attempt to have a case against Kumar dropped that was still ongoing. The inquiry showed that the accused had succeeded in tricking the DGP into thinking he was the Chief Justice of the High Court.
In March of this year, the High Court denied Kumar’s request for anticipatory relief after reviewing the case diary and discovering that two judges had assisted the accused.
It was reported that they had purportedly attempted to have Kumar’s case assigned to a specific High Court bench.
In May of this year, the top court issued an order providing Kumar with temporary protection from arrest after he appealed the denial of pre-arrest bail.
His attorney contended that the inquiry is over and that the accusations against him are based on the co-accused’s statements.
Additionally, it was argued that while there might be a case for charging Kumar under the Information Technology Act, the Indian Penal Code’s rules are unapplicable. In the end, Kumar had received no advantage, the Court was informed.
But the EOW contended that Kumar was the primary gainer from the crime, not only a co-accused, and that strong evidence had surfaced to establish a physical connection between him and the co-accused.
Additionally, according to the investigating agency, there were conversations between the two judicial officers and the co-accused on getting cases assigned to a specific Patna High Court bench.
After taking into account the accusations, the Supreme Court eventually denied Kumar’s request for anticipatory relief and ordered him to appear in person within two weeks.
The ruling stated: “This Court is of the opinion that the petitioner is not entitled to the benefit of anticipatory bail, primarily due to the apparent non-cooperation and the seriousness and gravity of the alleged offences.”
The petitioner was represented by Senior Advocates Siddhartha Dave and SD Sanjay and Advocate Ashish Batra.
The State was represented by advocates Saket Singh, Sangeeta Singh, and Niranjana Singh.