- Apprentice Lawyer
The Indore Bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court recently stayed a lower court order rejecting a closure report filed in a case against former IPS Officer Mayank Jain (Mayank Jain v. State of Madhya Pradesh).
The former bureaucrat was earlier retired from service following a Madhya Pradesh Lokayaukta raid that found him to be in possession of disproportionate assets.
Following an inquiry, the Lokayukta Special Police Establishment concluded that there was insufficient evidence to proceed against the officer. Rejecting the closure report, the trial court instead directed the prosecution to obtain the requisite sanction to institute proceedings against Jain.
Aggrieved by this order, Jain moved the High Court challenging the rejection of the Lokayukta closure report.
Before the High Court, Advocate Siddharth Sharma, appearing for Jain, asserted that the trial court could not have directed the prosecution to obtain sanction after a closure report was filed.
He contended that there are only three options available to a lower court:
Acceptance of the closure report;
Directing further investigation;
Treating the case as a complaint case.
Directing the prosecution to obtain sanction is not permissible in law, he submitted, relying on two Supreme Court pronouncements in Sanjaysinh Ramrao Chavan v. Dattatray Gulabrao Phalke and others and Vasanti Dubey v. State of MP.
The prosecution sought time to obtain instructions but stated that it would have no option but to grant sanction for prosecution in terms of the trial court order.
Staying the trial court order till the next hearing, the Division Bench of Justices Prakash Shrivastava and Shailendra Shukla proceeded to adjourn the matter to January 11, 2021.
Jain, a 1995-cadre IPS officer was an Inspector-General (Community Policing) in Bhopal when the disproportionate assets were recovered during a raid.