Recently, the Andhra Pradesh High Court ruled that the court can direct the police to issue a clearance certificate.
Justice R. Raghunandan Rao was considering the petition filed for issuance of police clearance certificate and complaining that the inaction of the second respondent was high-handed, arbitrary and violative of Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India.
In this case, the petitioner is working in Angola on the basis of his passport which is valid till 28.06.2028. The petitioner needs a police clearance certificate to renew his visa in Angola.
Due to this requirement, the petitioner filed an application before the second respondent, which is the Regional Passport Officer, Visakhapatnam. Police NOC is not being given to the petitioner.
The petitioner's wife had already filed a criminal complaint against him under sections 498-A, 323, 506 of the IPC read with section 3 of the Dowry Prohibition Act.
The counsel for the petitioner submitted that a police clearance certificate can always be issued by incorporating the details of the above offense. Non-presentation of such a clearance certificate will result in the authorities in Angola not renewing his visa and consequently, he will lose his employment in Angola.
Counsel for the Respondent submitted that the service of issuing of Police Clearance Certificate is a voluntary service rendered for the benefit of Indian citizens and there is no inherent duty on the other Respondent by virtue of any provision of law or judgment. Court, to issue such Police Clearance Certificate.
The issue of consideration before the bench was:
Whether Police Clearance Certificate can be issued to the petitioner or not?
The bench observed that while the second respondent is issuing such certificates to the citizens residing abroad, the second respondent cannot take the stand that since it is a voluntary service, the second respondent is required to issue such certificates or There can be no instructions for non-issuance.
In view of the above, the High Court directed the second respondent to issue police clearance certificate to the petitioner.