CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 1114 OF 2021
High Court Of Judicature For Rajasthan Vs The State Of Rajasthan
Date of Order:
APPELLANT(S): HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR RAJASTHAN
RESPONDENT(S): THE STATE OF RAJASTHAN & ANR.
The power to make arrest of persons lies with the investigating agencies and the 1973 Code as well as other statutory instruments have laid down the procedural structure in which such power may be exercised.
Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, Sections 457 and 354 of the Indian Penal Code read with Section 67 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.
- In an order issued on March 31, 2020, from which SLP originated, a learned Single Judge of the Rajasthan High Court instructed the High Court's Registrar (Judicial) not to include bail requests, appeals, requests for sentence suspension in appeals, and revisions in the category of extremely urgent matters.
- The High Court application will hereafter be referred to as the first bail application. The same learned Judge had instructed the police not to arrest people when the accused is charged with an offence carrying a maximum penalty of three years and the offence is triable by a First Class Magistrate in the other decision issued on May 17, 2021 that gave rise to SLP.
Whether the order passed by the High Court in the first bail application was to last till the withdrawal of the order of complete lockdown by the Government of India?
ARGUMENTS ADVANCED BY THE APPELLANT
- The High Court's Senior Advocate, Mr. Vijay Hansaria, has based his arguments on two key pillars. His principal defence is that the Chief Justice of a High Court makes the choices about the listing of cases by establishing the roster, and that no Bench has the authority to take over this administrative function.
- In support of the same legal theory, he has also cited this Court's rulings in the cases of Asok Pande v. Supreme Court of India and Shanti Bhushan v. Supreme Court of India &Anr.
- The impugned orders were granted without providing the High Court administration with any opportunity to be heard, which is the other grievance of the High Court administration, the appellant before us.
ARGUMENTS ADVANCED BY THE RESPONDENT
- The learned Senior Advocate for the State has argued that the Suo Motu Writ Petition order issued on May 7, 2021 addressed the issue of overcrowding in penal facilities.
- This order mandates the strict application of the arrest-related directives from the case of Arnesh Kumar v. State of Bihar and Anr.
- Prison overcrowding is a problem that affects many nations, including India. Given their social backgrounds and concern about contracting the deadly illness, some convicts might not be eager to be released.
- The authorities are instructed to consider the detainees' worries in such unusual circumstances.
- When the decision to grant or deny bail is left to the court's discretion, the facts and circumstances of each individual case play a significant role in whether bail is granted or denied.
- The main question is whether a recognisance or bond will accomplish that aim as the purpose of the accused's custody or imprisonment is to ensure his appearance and obedience to the court's jurisdiction and judgement.
- Thus, it is evident that the decision to grant or deny bail depends on a number of factors, the sum of which must be considered when reaching a decision by the court.
- Any one particular scenario cannot be regarded as having universal applicability or as requiring justification for granting or denying bail.
The court had deemed the process of deciding these appeals as having become infructuous because both bail applications were ultimately denied. But because these orders comprised general instructions that went much beyond the issues comprising the subject-matter of the two actions, the court decided to spend time verifying their validity and appropriateness. The directives could have violated the legal and constitutional rights of those who might be or are being charged with a crime, and they also limited the ability of the agencies in charge of conducting investigations. Even though the appealed orders' effects are no longer felt, the court chose to voice its opinion on the topic. The court grants the appeals based on these observations.
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