HC questions legality of provision mandating need for permission before arresting civil servant
The High Court today questioned the legality of the controversial provision of a government service law which has made it mandatory for police to take permission from higher authorities before arresting any civil servant on charges related to their job.
According to Section 41 of the Sarkari Chakri Ain (Government Service Act-2018), law enforcers must take permission from appropriate authorities to arrest a civil servant for a criminal offence committed while on official duty before the court accepts its charge sheet.
Today, the HC issued a rule asking the authorities concerned of the government to explain in four weeks why section 41 of the Sarkari Chakri Ain-2018 should not be scrapped.
While hearing a writ petition, the HC also asked the respondents to "show cause" why they should not be directed to refrain from giving posting to suspended deputy commissioner of Kurigram Sultana Pervin, and suspended executive magistrates Rintu Bikash Chakma and Nazim Uddin, who allegedly assaulted journalist Ariful Islam Regan in March last year, to any office.
In the rule, the court asked them to reply why the decision to give posting to suspended executive magistrate SM Rahatul Islam as assistant commissioner executive of Barishal should not be declared illegal, as they are all fugitive in the eye of law, writ petitioner's lawyer Ishrat Hasan told The Daily Star.
Secretaries to the ministries of cabinet, home, law and public administration and Sultana Pervin, Rintu Bikash Chakma, Nazim Uddin and SM Rahatul Islam have been made respondents to the rule.
The HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman issued the rule following a writ petition filed by the victim journalist Ariful Islam Regan challenging section 41 of the Sarkari Chakri Ain-2018 and necessary directives.
Ishrat Hasan, lawyer of Ariful who is the Kurigram correspondent of Bangla Tribune and Dhaka Tribune, said in the early hours of March 14, last year, a mobile court of Kurigram district administration, led by three assistant commissioners -- allegedly following DC Sultana's directives -- sentenced Ariful to one-year imprisonment after his arrest from his home on charge of possessing narcotics.
The HC on March 23 last year directed police to immediately record Ariful Islam's assault and attempted murder case against the then DC Sultana Pervin, three of her colleagues, and the Ansar personnel concerned.
The then DC and the three assistant commissioners, who were suspended, are fugitives in the eye of law as they are yet to surrender to the trial court in connection with the case, the lawyer said.
She also said the police have not arrested Sultana Pervin, Rintu Bikash Chakma, Nazim Uddin and SM Rahatul Islam in the case due to the controversial section 41 of the Sarkari Chakri Ain-2018.