The Allahabad High Court has dismissed a petition seeking quashing of criminal proceedings against the admin of a WhatsApp group where someone had sent a morphed photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The court observed that “he was a group admin and also a co-extensive member of the group”.
Dismissing a petition filed by Mohd Imran Malik of Muzaffarnagar, who was managing a WhatsApp group in which one of the members, Najam Alam, sent a morphed photo of the Prime Minister, Justice Mohd Aslam said: “From the perusal of the record, it appears that the applicant was a ‘group admin’ and he is also a co-extensive member of the group. In view of the above, I do not find any cogent reason to interfere.”
The petitioner’s contention was that the said message was not sent by him and it was sent by one Najam Alam. He was only the group ‘admin’. Hence, no case against him was made out and the proceeding was liable to be quashed.
However, the state government counsel opposed the petition, saying that liability of the sender of the message and that of the ‘group admin’ is co-extensive and it cannot be said no offence under Section 66 (computer related offences) of the Information Technology Act was made out against petitioner.
Having heard the arguments advanced from both sides, the court declined to interfere in the matter.