In this digital era, we need a new set of rules which adapt in the present era, rather than following age-old rules which were made for that particular time. A recent judgment of Punjab & Haryana HC says that the registered owner of a mobile is liable if his number or mobile has been used in committing a crime and he can’t claim innocence by saying that his mobile phone was used by someone else.
The petition was of pre-arrest bail, filed under Section 438 of CrPC in respect of an FIR filed under Section 420 of IPC read along with Section 66 of the IT Act, 2000. The petitioner was a registered owner of the mobile and mobile number and the respondent received a fake call from the same and as a result, the FIR was lodged. It was contended that the petitioner has no role to play because he was not in the possession of the mobile and had no knowledge about the same.
A single-judge bench of Justice Harsimran Singh Sethi while giving the judgment stated- “Once the mobile phone, which has been used in the commission of the offence, is registered in the name of the petitioner and the said number has been issued after the biometric verification of KYC of the petitioner, it is the petitioner, who has to explain as to how the said number was used for the commission of the offence.”
Case Title- Shubham Singh v. State of Punjab
Date of Decision- 03.06.2020
By: Shifa Qureshi