Observing that “some sort of fearpsychosis has started coming up in the minds of people…criminals are required to be dealt with firmly”, the Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissed the bail plea of a 22-year-old accused in a snatching case in Chandigarh.
Accused Ajay is facing charges under the sections 356 (Assault or criminal force in attempt to commit theft of property carried by a person), 379-B (snatching and use of force) and 34 (Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the IPC.
Complaint, Guddu Shah of Burail had alleged that on March 15, at about 11 pm, he and his friend Kamlesh were walking and when they reached near a grocery shop around 11.30 pm, four boys rushed towards them from the opposite side, surrounded them, pressed their necks with their arm and started assaulting them, asking them to take out whatever valuables they had, or otherwise, they would be strangulated by the assailants. While two assailants had pressed the necks of the complainant and his friend, the other two beat them up and took out the victims’ valuables including mobile phones, important documents and currency notes. The UT police registered an FIR at PS 34, and arrested Ajay, Sohail, Nitain and Rajaram, who were also identified by the complainant.
The accused moved the high court, seeking regular bail after his bail plea was dismissed by the Chandigarh District Court, after being opposed by UT Police counsel. After hearing the arguments, the single bench of Justice H S Madaan held, “The crime of snatching in the area is increasing at an alarming rate. People, especially women and children, are afraid of going out of their houses particularly in the evening and at late night hours. In the process of snatching valuables from common people, the criminals cause harm to them physically as well, especially when some resistance is offered.” The bench further said, “Some sort of fearpsychosis has started coming up in the minds of people. Such type of criminals are required to be dealt with firmly and they cannot be shown any leniency, lest the public should start losing faith in the criminal justice system.” The bench stated that in FIR, though the robbers were not named but the complainant identified them and the robbed articles were recovered from them, which shows their involvement.
Apprised by the UT counsel that the accused were involved in two other criminal cases of same nature, the HC dismissed the plea.
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