The Allahabad High Court recently ordered that all the accused persons, whose bail applications had been allowed subsequent to March 15, 2020 but had not been released due to non-availability of sureties amid the lockdown, may be released on execution of personal bonds.
The direction is in line with the order dated April 6, 2020 of a Chief Justice-led division bench, whereby production of sureties by persons who were granted bail on or after March 15, was temporarily waived of in view of the lockdown restrictions.
Reiterating the same, the single bench of Justice Abdul Moin on June 19 ordered,
"Looking to impediments in arranging sureties because of lockdown, while invoking powers under Article 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India, we deem it appropriate to order that all the accused-applicants whose bail applications came to be allowed on or after 15th March, 2020 but have not been released due to non-availability of sureties as a consequence to lockdown may be released on executing personal bond as ordered by the Court or to the satisfaction of the jail authorities where such accused is imprisoned, provided the accused-applicants undertakes to furnish required sureties within a period of one month from the date of his/her actual release."
The order was passed after the bench noted the many accused-applicants had not been released despite obtaining a favorable order, due to non-availability of sureties.
The court was hearing the bail application of one Ankit Gupta, accused of raping a minor girl aged 14 years.
The bail plea was allowed on an observation that the medical report of the victim did not indicate any bodily injuries. The bench was also conscious of the conduct of the victim's mother, who had resiled from pressing charges in another case.
The accused had alleged that the victim's mother was in the habit of lodging FIR and thereafter entering into a compromise with the accused persons.
The court remarked that a prima facie case is made out for grant of bail.
Case Title: Ankit Gupta v. State Of UP
Case No.: Bail No. 9189/2019
Quorum: Justice Abdul Moin
Appearance: Advocate Farooq Ayoob, JB Singh, Neelam Singh and Vivek Chandra (for Applicant); GA Prabhat Kumar (for Respondent)
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