The Supreme Court delivered judgment on Thursday that an accused is being granted default or statutory bail under Section 167(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), a condition cannot be imposed on him for the deposit of money.
The provision under Section 167(2) of the CrPC states that the only requirement for granting of default or statutory bail to an accused in the event that investigation is not completed and a charge-sheet filed within the prescribed time period, which is accused is in the jail for more than 60 or 90 days, as the case may be, and within 60 or 90 days, as the case may be and no charge sheet is filed by 60th or 90th day.
The Bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan, Justice R. Subhash Reddy, and Justice MR Shah observed while considering petition against the decision of the Madras High Court’s Madhurai bench while releasing an accused on default bail/Statutory bail, imposed a condition to deposit Rs.8,00,000.
Setting aside this order of the High Court, the court noted that if a chargesheet against the accused is not filed after the completion of the statutory period then they have an “indefeasible right” and the accused becomes entitled to default bail once the accused applies for default bail and furnish bail. The only requirement for granting default bail to the accused is investigation is not complete and no charge sheet is filed within the stipulated statutory period. Imposing any other condition would be unsustainable the court said.
“Imposing such condition while releasing the accused on default bail/statutory bail would frustrate the very object and purpose of default bail under Section 167(2), CrPC,” [i] the judgment reads.
The court also observed that another condition imposed by High Court directing the accused to report before the concerned police station daily at 10.00 as for interrogation is concerned, is also unsustainable and too harsh. The apex court stated the condition which can be impose to ask the accused to co-operate the investigation and present him before the concerned police station as and when required.
Advocates B. Raghunath and Sriram Parakkat appeared for the appellants and Additional Advocate General Jayanth Muthuraj represented the State of Tamil Nadu.
Saravanan vs. State
[CRIMINAL APPEAL NOS.681682 OF 2020]
[i] Saravanan vs. State [ CRIMINAL APPEAL NOS.681682 OF 2020]