[5/14, 12:34] N. Ramesh Ed Advt: A quash petition was filed (Crl OP 7568/2020) to quash the FIR filed against Mr. Andrew Sam, publisher of digital magazine “SIMPLI-CITY”, Coimbatore, came up for admission today (14.5.2020) before Madras High Court. The FIR was registered under section 188 & 505(i)(b) IPC on the complaint by Assistant Commissioner of Coimbatore Municipal Corporation. It was argued on behalf of the petitioner that the complainant is not ‘public servant’ within the meaning of section 188 IPC he is not aggrieved. This High Court has already held that no FIR can be registered under section 188 IPC. Publication of news is freedom of press & 505(i)(b) IPC will not be attracted. If at all only a Complaint can be filed before magistrate. This FIR is politically motivated and to be quashed. The state public prosecutor opposed for grant of stay of FIR and sought time for filing counter. It was contended by state PP that as the petitioner was arrested and released on bail, there is no urgency. The Hon’ble Court has observed that any proceeding taken will be subject to this petition (CrlOP). The case is adjourned for filing counter by state.
[5/14, 12:39] Sekarreporter 1: [5/14, 12:27] Sekarreporter 1: CRIMINAL ORIGINAL PETITION FOR QUASH
UNDER SECTION 482 of Cr.P.C
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE OF MADRAS
Crl.O.P. No. of 2020
CR.NO.654 OF 2020
(On the file of Respondent)
D ANDREW SAMRAJA PANDIAN, aged 39 years,
Son of Late Daniel
Founder and chief executive officer
“SimpliCity.com”, a local-news website
4F2, Block 5, Parsn Antara,
Coimbatore – 641045 … Petitioner/Accused
- Inspector of Police,
B2 R.S Puram PS
Cr. No. 654of 2020
- Assistant Commissioner
Coimbatore Municipal Corporation
The above named petitioners humbly submit as follows:
- The address for service of all notices and process on the petitioners is that
Advocate – MS No.896/1997,
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org,
Mobile – 9444261613,
No.47, 2nd Floor, Oriental Building, Armenian Street, Chennai- 1.
The address for service on the Respondent is as stated above.
- The petitioner has filed this petition praying to quash the FIR in Crime
No.654/2020 registered on 22.4.2020 against the petitioner under
sections 188, 505(1)(b) of IPC and 3 of the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897
on the basis of complaint given by Assistant Commissioner, Coimbatore
Corporation for allegedly dis-obeying regulations by causing publications
in a news website “SimpliCity” about (1) a protest by medical students and
trainee doctors at the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital over lack of
food (2) complaints from the residents of Coimbatore over pilferage in
ration shops during the lockdown.
[5/14, 12:28] Sekarreporter 1: 7
the accused and with a view to spite him due to private and personal
grudge, the FIR ought to be quashed.
- The investigation is fallacious and the subsequent powers to alter the
offences while submitting the charge sheet do not vindicate retrospectively
the erroneous commencement of the investigation itself. On the face of it,
the commencement of the investigation was beyond the jurisdiction of the
police and was based on entirely fictitious and baseless allegations, there
cannot arise any question of the investigation proceeding even for a
moment, since the investigation was bad ab initio. Subsequent damage
control exercises under the quoted provisions would be a mere autopsy
after the damage was already done by subjecting a free citizen of India to
unnecessary investigation and torture, unlawfully restraining him and
putting at stake his personal liberty and freedom of speech and expression
at the drop of a hat.
- The intention of the complainant is to harass the press and to restrain
the magazine from publishing any news item. A great damage would result
to public good if the prosecution is permitted against the petitioner. In view
of circumstances stated above this Hon’ble Court may be pleased to STAY
all further proceeding pursuant to registration of FIR in Crime
No.654/2020 dated 22.4.2020 on the file of 1st Respondent/Police pending
disposal of the criminal original petition and thus render justice.
- The Petitioner states that due to covid-19 lockdown, certified copy of
impugned FIR could not be obtained. Copy taken from TN Police website
has been filed. It is therefore humbly prayed that this Hon’ble Court may
be pleased to DISPENSE WITH THE PRODUCTION CERTIFIED COPY OF
IMPUGNED FIR in Crime No.654/2020 on the file of 1st Respondent and
thus render justice.
- The petitioner therefore humbly prays that this Hon’ble Court may be
pleased to call for the records in respect of registration of FIR in Crime
No.654/2020 dated 22.4.2020 on the file of 1st Respondent/Police and
QUASH the same as illegal and not maintainable and thus render justice.
Dated at Chennai on this the 11th day of May, 2020.
Counsel for Petitioner