Chennai: The Madras high court directed the Regional Passport Officer, Chennai, to consider the application submitted by DMK Treasurer and former minister Durai Murugan to re-issue the passport to him, in accordance with law, if otherwise the application is in order and pass appropriate orders within 4 weeks.
Allowing the petition filed by Durai Murugan, Justice Pushpa Sathyanarayana set aside the order of the Regional Passport Officer, rejecting his application to re-issue the passport to him.
According to petitioner, the passport issued in his favour on October 8, 2013 was valid till October 7, 2023. Since, the pages therein got used up, he applied for re-issue of passport on November 9, 2018 with supporting documents. The said application was returned by the authorities, he added.
The judge said it was to be noted that the application of the petitioner was rejected by the RPO on the ground that there were criminal cases pending against him, which had led to an adverse profile report.
It was relevant to note that there was no material placed before this court to show that the Magistrate concerned had taken cognisance in the alleged criminal cases and hence, the same cannot be stated to be the criminal proceedings pending before the court of law, the judge added.
The judge said it was well settled principle that the pendency of the FIR on the file of the police station cannot be equated with pendency of the criminal proceedings before the court of law. Even after filing of the charge sheet by the police, only after the magistrate issues process, after takingcognisance, it can be construed that the proceedings are pending before the court.
There was a Criminal Revision Case, which was said to be pending before this court.
The petitioner was not even served with any notice in the criminal revision case said to be pending on the file of this court. It was the claim of Richardson Wilson, counsel for the petitioner that the said criminal case was filed by the State against the order of discharge of the petitioner.
Hence, even admitting that a criminal revision case was pending, since the same was against discharge of the petitioner, the same cannot be put against the petitioner.
“The petitioner is seeking to travel, inter alia, to undergo medical supervisory treatment in Singapore. In the light of the above facts coupled with the legal position, the impugned rejection of the petitioner’s passport application cannot be sustained and it calls for interference from this court”, the judge added....