Andhra Pradesh High Court grants bail to suspended Judicial Officer in Sedition Charges

S. RAMA KRISHNA vs. THE STATE OF ANDHRA PRADESH

The court granted a bail to Suspended Judicial Officer, who expressed his disaffection with the manner of governance. He was charged under IPC Sections: 124-A, 153, and 153-A .
During a television debate, the suspended officer had made intemperate statement against government and chief minister, wherein he pronounced that he was looking forward to cutting head of Chief Minister. A complaint was filed as it would result in enmity between 2 sections of society and amount to violent overthrow of government. (Offence under Section 124-A I.P.C). He was thus arrested and remanded to judicial custody.

On behalf of Petitioner, it was not his intention to call for overthrow of government and it was merely his disaffection with governance. The Kedarnath Singh’s Case (AIR 1962 SC 955) was an answer to this charge of Sedition.

The public prosecutor opposed Bail stating that Petitioner being a Judicial Officer was fully aware of consequences and impact of his statements. His statements would amount to call for overthrow of government and Section 124-A was applicable. Rules 15-17 A.P Civil Services Conduct rules stipulate no statement should be made regarding functioning of government.

The court after granting him bail stated that statement was made in debate that was recorded and that cannot be altered. Moreover, 60 days had elapsed and no question of tempering would arise.

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