Deciding on the interim bail application of a Northeast Delhi riots accused who wanted to appear for his Class X CBSE board exams, a trial court judge observed that there is a trend of accused applying for interim bail on various grounds and then extending it as per the Delhi High Court’s directions, and expressed doubt whether this would apply in riots cases.
The observations were made by Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav, who denied bail to the riot accused, who was allegedly involved in a case of murder and rioting.
The accused had applied for interim bail to appear for his science and maths examinations slated to take place on September 23 and 25.
The court refused to grant him interim bail, noting that he had in the past cleared his social sciences paper after he appeared for the examination from inside jail.
On the question of whether riot accused can avail extension of their interim bail, the trial court asked the Delhi HC to clarify the same for “guidance of this court”.
ASJ Yadav observed, “This court has been exclusively dealing with bail matters of riot cases… A specific trend has been noticed by this court that a number of accused persons have been applying for interim bails on one ground or the other. If the court grants interim bail…, then invariably the accused persons file applications for extension of interim bail on the ground that the Full Bench of the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi… has been pleased to extend the interim bails en bloc from time to time… This court has doubt as to whether the directions of the…High Court of Delhi passed in the aforesaid decisions will apply to the cases of riots or not…”
The Delhi High Court had taken the decision of extending interim bail of inmates to decongest prisons amid the Covid pandemic. ASJ Yadav relied on a category of inmates who were excluded by the high court, which includes riots accused.
“In my humble opinion, the interim bails granted purely on humanitarian grounds for a limited period should not come within the purview of the directions of the Full Bench of the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi…,” ASJ Yadav said.
The court directed that a copy of the order be sent to the Registrar General of the Delhi HC, with “a request to issue appropriate guidelines for the undersigned to follow in the cases of interim bails in cases of riots”.
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