The High Court of Kerala, in the case of Vinesh vs. State of Kerala held that an accused charged for the offence of attempt to rape under section 511 read with section 376 of the Indian Penal Code is entitled to statutory bail if no final report is filed within 60 days after remand.
This was held by a single bench judge, Justice PV Kunhikrishnan while considering the bail application of a person accused of attempt to rape, who contended that he was entitled to statutory bail under Section 167(2) (a) (ii) of CrPC as he was arrested on 19.06.2020 and completed 60 days of detention.
According to section 167(2)(a) of CrPC, a Magistrate cannot authorize detention of the accused beyond 60 days if the investigation pertains to an offence punishable with maximum of 10 years imprisonment. Thus the issues here was whether the maximum punishment to be imposed for the attempt to rape under section 511 read with section 376 of IPC is 10 years or not.
The court referred to section 57 of IPC
Fractions of terms of punishment: In calculating fractions of terms of punishment,imprisonment for life shall be reckoned as equivalent toimprisonment for twenty years.
The Court further referred to Section 511 of IPC
Punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other imprisonment: Whoever attempts to commit an offence punishable by this Code with imprisonment for life or imprisonment, or to cause such an offence to be committed, and in such attempt does any act towards the commission of the offence, shall, where no express provision is made by this Code for the punishment of such attempt, be punished with imprisonment of any description provided for the offence, for a term which may extend to one-half of the imprisonment for life or, as the case may be, one-half of the longest term of imprisonment provided for that offence, or with such fine as is provided for the offence, or with both.
The Court also referred to the case Rakesh Kumar Paul vs. State of Assam stating that while construing section 167 of CrPC, a liberal approach is necessary.
After considering the above sections and after hearing contentions of both the sides, the Court allowed the bail application with stringent conditions.