The Karnataka High Court has said trial court cannot defer hearing of bail application stating that it is not a case of extreme urgency without going into the merits of the matter.
Justice Mohammad Nawaz said "The Consideration of application to be enlarged on bail in accordance with law is a right that can be encapsulated in the Right to Life under Article 21 of the Constitution of India."
Accused Iliyaz Khan was arrested on April 4, during the ongoing lockdown period, under sections offences punishable under Sections 341, 353, 504 r/w Section 34 of IPC. He has been in custody for over a month and is lodged in the prison. After filing for bail before the district court he submitted that necessary report to the Principal District and Sessions Court, Bengaluru Rural District on 07.04.2020 as well as on 13.04.2020 to ensure that the petition be taken up on priority.
However, the district judge has refused to order that the bail petition be taken up for consideration stating that it is not a case of 'extreme urgency'.
Advocate Sunil S. Rao, appearing for the accused in the high court argued that petitioner has been in custody for about a month the offence under Section 341 of I.P.C. is punishable for imprisonment for one month. There could not be deferment of consideration of bail petition for any reason and appropriate arrangements ought to be made to take up the bail petition.
The court said "Once bail petition has been filed, as petition involves the question of life in all its expanseful connotations and liberty of the petitioner, it is appropriate to take up the petition and consider it in accordance with law in an expeditious manner. Without commenting as regards to the merits of the matter, it cannot be stated that though the petitioner seeks for enlarging him on bail, petitioner is seeking to move a matter which does not involve any extreme urgency and hence, the consideration of application for bail could be deferred. Such a pedantic approach is not acceptable when considering the application filed seeking to be enlarged on bail."
The court accordingly directed the concerned Court to take up the petition seeking enlargement of bail and to dispose of the said petition within a period of seven days.
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