December 20, 2017
The Supreme Court decided an appeal filed against order passed by the High Court of Rajasthan in a criminal case without assigning any reasons while rejecting bail application. The apex court remanded back the case to the High Court to consider bail application afresh.
A Supreme Court Bench of Justice R. K. Agrawal and Justice A M Sapre pronounced the Judgment in the above appeal. The facts of the case are:
The appellant apprehending his arrest in connection with commission of the
offences punishable under Sections 143, 341, 323, 308, 332 and 353 of the Indian
Penal Code, 1860 pursuant to FIR No. 332/2017 registered at Police Station
Jaitaran, Dist. Pali, filed an application for grant of anticipatory bail under
Section 438 of the Code before the High Court of Rajasthan. The Single Judge of
the High Court dismissed the application by impugned order, which has given rise
to filing an appeal by way of special leave in Supreme Court by the applicant.
Extracts of the impugned order is:
"This bail application has been filed under Section 438 CrPC in connection with FIR No.332/2017 registered at Police Station Jaitaran, Dist. Pali for the offences under Sections 143, 341, 323, 308, 332 & 353 IPC. Heard learned counsel for the petitioner and learned Public Prosecutor appearing for the State as also learned counsel for the complainant and carefully perused the relevant material made available on record.
Looking to the overall facts and circumstances of the case, but without expressing any opinion on the merits and demerits of the case, I do not deem it just and proper to enlarge the petitioner (s) on bail.
Therefore, this bail application is rejected."
While passing the Judgment the Supreme Court bench said that It is not necessary to issue notice to the State much lesser to hear the state in this appeal.
The court also said that :
"Mere perusal of the impugned order quoted supra would go to show that the Single Judge failed to assign any reason for rejecting the bail application of the appellant."
"The general observations that "Looking to the overall facts and circumstances of the case, it is not considered proper to grant bail to the Petitioner" can never be the reasoning much less judicial reasoning required for rejection of the bail petition whether it is filed under Section 438 or Section 439 of the Code.
"We are constrained to observe that the learned Single Judge did not apply its judicial mind and passed the impugned order in a very casual and cavalier manner. This Court cannot countenance such casual approach of the High Court while deciding the application for bail."
The court opined that:
"In our considered opinion, the Single Judge failed to take note of the law laid down by this Court quoted supra and thus erred in passing the impugned order. He also neither set out the facts of the case nor mentioned the submissions of the learned counsel appearing for both the parties and nor his reasoning as to why he does not consider it proper to grant anticipatory bail to the appellant. This was the least, which was expected of from the Single Judge to keep in mind, while passing the order."
The court allowed the appeal and remanded back the case to the High Court for considering the bail application of the appellant afresh on its merits.
Read the Judgment of Supreme Court dated 14.12.2017