Neerj Kirola vs. State of Uttarakhand & Anr. [C482 No. 1437 of 2023]
In this case, the complainant accused an individual of misusing a Facebook friend request to send objectionable and indecent photographs and videos. The accused faced charges under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act). Subsequently, in an attempt to quash the summoning order, the accused approached the Uttarakhand High Court. During the proceedings before the Hon’ble High Court, the complainant and accused expressed their desire to resolve the matter amicably, as the complainant had accepted the accused’s apology. The Hon’ble High Court saw it as paramount to preserve peace and harmony, decided to quash the criminal proceedings, but under a few conditions.
In an order which can only be described as the “Eco-Friendly Order”, the Hon’ble Court on 19th July 2023 ruled that criminal proceedings against the accused to be quashed, if he plants 50 trees at his own cost in an area designated by the Horticulture Department of his district or taluka. The planting would be supervised by the Horticulture Department, and only after presenting a certificate confirming the tree planting, the criminal proceedings would be dropped. However, failure to fulfil this condition within a month from the date of the order would automatically lead to the revival of the criminal case.
This ruling sets a unique precedent, combining practicality and environmental consciousness, and as stated by the Court in the judgement sought to teach the accused the value of maintaining genuine and respectful relationships in the digital age.

Author of this article:
Adv. Ravish Bhatt,
Partner, R&D Law Chambers,
Dual Qualified Lawyer Solicitor | International Tax Affiliate

Connect with Mr. Bhatt on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adit-ravishbhatt/

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