All HC: No Parity in Juvenile Bail as Applicable for Adult U/s 437/439 CrPC

In the Latest High Court Order, Hon’ble Justice J.J Munir Of the Allahabad High Court , decided bail application of a Juvenile

Allahabad High Court has held that the rule of Parity as applicable in the case of adults under Section 437 and 439 Cr.P.C. is not applicable to bail of Juvenile in Conflict with law.

Brief facts of the case Abhishek Kumar Yadav vs State Of U.P. And Anr

As per the complainant, the two deceased and other relatives went to attend a function in a nearby area. When they reached a place called Bandhe, they were attacked by Abhishek Kumar Yadav and other accused with iron rods and pipes.

The informant stated that the deceased were surrounded and were battered to death—two other people who were travelling with the deceased grievously hurt but managed to save their lives.

Cases were filed against all the accused, and the revisionist claimed that he was a juvenile and applied to the Juvenile Justice Board. The revisionist was declared a juvenile by the Board and his age declared to be 17 years nine months and 19 days on the date of occurrence.

The revisionist filed a bail application before the Juvenile Justice Board, but his bail application was rejected. An appeal was filed before the Sessions Judge which was also dismissed.

Aggrieved by order of the Sessions Judge, the instant revision petition was filed.

Proceeding before the Court

Arguments raised by the counsel of the revisionist.

The counsel argued that the secession Court had committed an error by refusing the bail plea of the revisionist. He submitted that because the Juvenile Justice Board has declared the revisionist as a juvenile, he should be granted bail. The counsel further submitted that the Sessions Judge should not have considered the gravity of the offence because the revisionist was a Juvenile.

It was further submitted that the bail plea could only be rejected if the case fell under dis-entitling category under Section 12(1) of the Juvenile Justice Act.

Arguments raised by the Opposite Party.

The counsel for the opposite party submitted to the Court the order of the Sessions Court is sound, and the Court should not interfere with it.

Analysis of the Court

The Court observed that when it comes to considering the bail plea of a juvenile, the parameters were different when compared to adults. The Court specifically referred to the provisions mentioned in Section 12(1) of the Juvenile Justice Act and opined that if the case of the juvenile falls under them, then the bail should not be given. 

Further, the Court took note of the fact that the accused in this particular case was above the age of 16 years and was just shy of 18 years. In other words, he was capable of making the distinction between right and wrong.

Allahabad High Court opined that he if an offender who is accused of gruesome crimes like rape or murder is allowed to be released on bail, then it sends a very message to society. The Court also opined that a criminal like the revisionist might bring harm to the society at large as well.

Hon’ble Judge also observed that the rule of parity, which normally applies in cases of bail under Sections 437 or 439 Cr.P.C., may not be attracted to the case of a child in conflict with the law, where another child in the conflict in the same crime is granted the concession of bail, under the Act. 

This is for the reason that in the case of bail to a juvenile, in matters where the entitlement to bail is not on merits but by virtue of the provisions of Section 12(1) of the Act, the right is always personal to the accused. 

It is not that for an identical role, two children in conflict with law, would both pass muster under the proviso to Section 12(1) of the Act. In the case of one, the Court may infer based on the Social Investigation Report, the police record and other circumstances that release on bail would not bring the young offender into association with a known criminal or expose him to moral, physical or psychological danger, but in the case of the other, the conclusion may be diametrically the opposite, considering the circumstances of the child. 

The circumstances that could differ could be the criminal history of a family, the presence of family members in one case, who could be expected to exercise good care and control over the child in future and the absence of such family members in the other case. 

Further, the court said the varying company of the two children shown in the Social Investigation Report could also lead to different results in case of two children, accused of the same offence, with the same role.

The Court, after going through the Social Investigation Report, the Court believed that the revisionist should not be granted bail.

Further, the Court considered the argument of the counsel of the revisionist where it was stated that a co-accused who was also declared a juvenile was released on bail.

Above argument was negated by the court by stating that the other co-accused was around 13 years old and was also disabled, while the revisionist was non-disabled and was almost a major. The Hon’ble Court opined that the two accused were different and their case should not be compared to each other.

Decision of the Court

Allahabad High Court opined that the revisionist should not be granted bail at this point. 

The trial court was directed to conclude the trial preferably within three months from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.

It has also been directed that if the witnesses do not appear in the case, then coercive measures should be taken against them.

Case Details:-

Title: Abhishek Kumar Yadav vs State Of U.P. And Anr

Case No. CRIMINAL REVISION No. – 1221 of 2019

Date of Order: 21.09.2020

Coram: Hon’ble Justice J.J. Munir

Advocates: Counsel for Revisionist:- Anand Prakash Srivastava, Matiur Rehman Khan, Sugendra Kumar Yadav Counsel for Opposite Party:- G.A. 

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