Allahabad High Court rejects police plea
The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court has said that wearing a beard in the police force is not a constitutional right. The court dismissed the petition filed by the Uttar Pradesh police against the ban on wearing a beard. The High Court has also refused to intervene in the suspension order and chargesheet issued against the constable who filed the petition. The order was passed by a single bench of Justice Rajesh Singh Chouhan on two separate petitions filed by Constable Mohammad Farman posted at Khandasa police station in Ayodhya district.
In the first petition along with the circular issued by the DGP of UP on 26 October 2020, the petitioner challenged the suspension order issued against him by the Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) and Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Ayodhya. In the second petition, the chargesheet issued in the departmental disciplinary action against the petitioner was challenged.
The petitioner made this argument
The petitioner has said that he has kept his beard based on Muslim principles under the right to religious freedom given in the constitution. Prosecutors had opposed the petition. He questioned the quality of both the petitions. The court, after hearing arguments from both the parties, said in its judgment that the circular dated October 26, 2020 was an executive order issued to maintain discipline in the police force. The police force should be a disciplined force and as a law enforcement agency it should also have a secular image.
Instructions to complete the investigation against the petitioner
The High Court said that the petitioner had violated the order without shaving even after the warning of his SHO (station in-charge). Dismissing the petition on 12 August 2021, the bench directed the authorities to complete the departmental inquiry against the petitioner as per the law.
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The first case came from Baghpat
In fact, there was a dispute last year over the beard of Sub-Inspector Intsar Ali, who was posted in UP’s Baghpat district. Sub-inspector Intsar Ali, posted at Ramala police station in Baghpat, was suspended on October 20 by SP Baghpat Abhishek Singh. Sub-Inspector Intasar Ali was accused of growing a beard without permission and violating service rules. Despite constant warnings, he did not recover and continued to grow a beard. Finally, SP Baghpat Abhishek Singh suspended Intasar for not following the rules / instructions of the police department. However, when he cut his beard, it was undone.
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