Disturbed with manner in which HC “casually released” man on bail, says SC

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New Delhi, Nov 19 (PTI) The Supreme Court has set aside the Allahabad High Court order granting bail to a man in connection with a rape case, saying it is “disturbed” with the manner in which he was “casually released”. The apex court said that the high court, in its October 2019 order, had noted that he was involved in other serious offences and had committed crime even when he was out on bail.

“We are disturbed to notice the manner in which the high court has casually released the respondent No.1 (accused) on bail despite having noted that respondent No.1 was involved in other serious offences and had committed offence even while on bail,” a bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar said in its November 16 order.

The bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Hrishikesh Roy, was hearing an appeal against the high court order granting bail to the accused in a case registered in Moradabad district for alleged offences of rape and under the provisions of the Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences Act.

The apex court noted in its order that in terms of the high court order, the man was released on bail but he was arrested in connection with some other offence.

The top court said that while issuing notice on the plea, it had said that if he was not released on bail in the concerned case, he shall continue to remain in jail till the pendency of appeal.

“It is reported that respondent No.1 (accused) was released on bail after the high court order but came to be arrested in connection with some other offence. That makes no difference. In our opinion, the impugned judgment cannot stand the test of judicial scrutiny,” the bench said.

“We accordingly set aside the same and direct that respondent No.1 shall remain in jail….during the pendency of the trial of this case,” it said.

The top court, while disposing of the appeal, directed the lower court to ensure that the trial is completed by end of March next year. PTI ABA MNL SJK ABA RKS RKS