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Bail u/s 437 Cr.P.C.

(Querist) 16 September 2008 This query is : Resolved 
Can a megistrate grant bail in cases which are punishable with life imorisonment U/S 437 Cr.P.C.?
G. ARAVINTHAN (Expert) 16 September 2008
No Aravind certainly cannot. It can be granted atleast by a Sessions Judge
sanjay kumar patibandla (Expert) 16 September 2008

he can not grant bail U/s 437 Cr.P.C for for offense which can be punishable for life.

But we have one circumstance. Juvenile boards are headed by the Magistrates only. That boards can grant bail U/s 437 Cr.P.C even the punishment is life
Rajesh Kumar (Expert) 16 September 2008
In normal circumstances no, but for special reason recorded, in the conditions specified in 437(1), magistrate can grant bail.
ARVIND JAIN (Querist) 17 September 2008
kindly reconsider ur view in view of the judgment of justice AmarDatt of P&H High Court in Ramji vs State of Panjab inCr.m No 4171/2000, dtd 29.11.2000. He has held that it can be granted by MM where punishment is not death or life imprisonment(Alternate). In case of simple life imprisonment cases, MM is empowered.What do you say now ?
ARVIND JAIN (Querist) 17 September 2008
It may be kept open please.
Rajesh Kumar (Expert) 17 September 2008
Well, bail can be denied by the magistrate to persons accused of death or life imprisonment, "if there is reasonable ground of believing that he is guilty". If you can convince the court that there is no reasonable ground for believing, you can get bail.
Mark the terms "reasonable", "grounds of believing", "believing that he is guilty". Thus if the grounds are not reasonable, bail may be granted. Mere grounds of suspicion is not enough, grounds of belief is required. Belief must be there that he is guilty, innocence is not required to be proved.
Off course magistrate can grant bail in case of women, child, sick or infirm.
I think there is enough scope in the section under which magistrates can grant bail, the problem we face is mindset. No rist attitude taken by the judicial officer. Refusing bail is seen as safe option. You can fight with these biases, so people prefer to change forum.
Rajesh Kumar (Expert) 17 September 2008
Let us keep this open.
salilkumarp (Expert) 18 September 2008
dear sirs,
i am afraid to disagree you all sirs !
even a magistate can grant bail in an offence punishable with life imprisonment,if police failed to submit chargesheet with in 90 days as stipulated u/s 167 (2) crpc.
and , the word used is " shall " so a magistrate has no option just to grant bail irrespective of the gravity of offence
ARVIND JAIN (Querist) 18 September 2008
Im not talking abt 167(2)Cr.P.C. Pl View it in the light of interpretation given by Justice Amar Datt as mentioned above. It needs a serious thought over the issue.Judgment is as under;-

Cr. M. Nos. 41711/41712 of 2000 in Cr. M. No. 41125 of 2000
Decided On: 29.11.2000
Appellants: Ramji
Respondent: State of Punjab
Hon'ble Judge:
Amar Dutt, J.
For Appellant/Petitioner/Plaintiff: Mr. M.S. Sidhu, Adv.
For Respondents/Defendant: Mr. R.P.S. Athwal, DAG, Punjab
Subject: Criminal
Catch Words
Mentioned IN
Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 - Sections 29 and 437; Indian Penal Code, 1860 - Sections 120-B, 121, 132, 302, 303, 305, 307, 325, 326, 363-A, 377, 389, 394, 396, 409, 420, 467, 468, 471, 472, 474 and 477
Cases Referred:
Mohammed Eusoof v. Emperor, AIR 1926 Rang 51; Tularam v. Emperor, AIR 1927 Nag 53; Satyan v. State, 1981 Crl. L.J. 1313; Sudarsan Bose v. State of West Bengal, 1997(4) All India Criminal L.R. 154; Ashireddygari Narasimhareddy v. State of A.P., 2000(3) RCR (Crl.) 573; State v. Sajjan Singh, AIR 1953 Pepsu 146
Amar Dutt, J.
1. The petitioners filed Crl. Misc. No. 41125-M of 2000 seeking anticipatory bail incase F.I.R.No. 223 dated 7.10.2000 registered at Police Station, Division No. 5, Ludhiana under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 120B with a direction that if petitioners surrender before the trial Court on or before 15.11.2000 at 10.00 A.M..the said Court will dispose of the bail application that may be filed by them together with any request for remand that may be made by the police as expeditiously as possible preferably on the same date.
2. The petitioners did not comply with the above order because according to them the offence under Section 467 IPC is punishable with life imprisonment and as such the trial Court, which in this case would be the Court of Judicial Magistrate 1st Class, would not be empowered to grant bail in view of the provisions of Section 437 Cr.P.C and had instead on 30.11.2000 filed Crl. Misc. No. 41711 of 2000 seeking modification of the order dated 9.11.2000 on the ground that the petitioners in fact would not be entitled to avail the limited relief given by this Court while disposing of Crl. Misc. No. 41125-M of 2000.
3. Ordinarily, this application would have been disposed of by merely modifying the order dated 9.11.2000 and directing the petitioners to surrender before the Sessions Judge on any other date but since the question as to whether the Court of Judicial Magistrate 1st Class is entitled to grant bail in cases punishable with imprisonment for life, though it is the trial Court, would arise in a large number of cases, notice of this application was given to Advocate General, Punjab and arguments have been heard in detail.
4. The issue which is raised in the present case is that though the offences punishable with imprisonment for life are triable by the Court of Judicial Magistrate 1st Class, the difficulty which is being faced by the Courts, according to the counsel forthe petitioners, arises out of the interpretation that they are placing on the provisions of Section 437 Cr.P.C. which spells out the power of Court other than the High Court or the Court of Sessions to admit a person accused of committing non-bailable offence on bail. The relevant portion of Section 437 Cr.P.C. reads as under:
"437(1)- When any person accused of, or suspected of, the commission of any non-bailable offence is arrested or detained without warrant by an officer-in-charge of a police station or appears or is brought before a Court other than the High Court or Court of Session, he may be released on bail, but -
(i) such person shall not be so released if there appear reasonable grounds for believing that he has been guilty of an offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life."
5. A perusal of this Section indicates that the restriction on the power of the Court is in rela

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