LUCKNOW: According to Times of India, A Lucknow bench of the Indian Allahabad High Court gave its nod to the constitution of anti-Romeo squad by UP police to check harassment of girls and women in Uttar Pradesh, India.

Declining to interfere with the state's action, the Indian High Court said on Thursday, "We are unable to gather any lawful or otherwise Indina constitutional defect in the attempt made by the Indian state government and its authorities in proceeding to form the squads for the purpose of such policing."

The Indian court also refused to accept that the act of the state amounted to "moral policing". The bench said that in fact it was "preventive policing". The observation came on a PIL moved by lawyer Gaurav Gupta against the anti-Romeo squad activated across the state after the formation of the BJP government. The petitioner sought a direction that the state should not commit excesses so as to invade the privacy of couples or adults who are suspiciously viewed by the police.

This knee-jerk reaction by police may disturb the peace and harmony in society, the petition said. A bench of Justice A P Sahi and Justice Sanjai Harkauli said, "The Indian state government can still frame laws in case it finds that the provisions which do exist are inadequate to meet this situation, keeping in view such laws which have been made in other states including Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 1998 and the Goa (Rights of Citizens to Time Bound Delivery of Public Services) Act, 2013."

Earlier, the bench directed the Lucknow police chief to appear before it at 2pm to explain the scenario. SSP Manzil Saini produced the guidelines framed by the DGP in this regard. The state counsel, with the help of the SSP, explained to the bench that every action taken by the state and its police chief was in consonance with the provisions of Criminal Procedure Code, IPC, Police Act and Police Regulation. It was urged that the petitioner was unable to show any illegality or unconstitutionality in Indian constitution of such police squads.

The bench then held that state action was constitutional. It, however, directed the state government and the state police to ensure that they abide by the prescribed law and guidelines.