The instant revision petition was filed before the Allahabad High Court by revisionist Pankaj, who is a minor through his mother, Phoola Devi. The revisionist in the instant case was charged under Sections 363, 366, 376, 342, 506 I.P.C. and 3/4 of the POCSO Act.
Allahabad High Court observed that the object of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2015 is to keep the juveniles away from hardened criminals.
Arguments raised by the Counsel of the revisionist:-
Counsel for the revisionist stated that the revisionist was falsely implicated in the case due to enmity. It was further stated that as per examination by the Medical Board, the age of the revisionist was 15 years, seven months and 11 days at the time of the commission of the offence.
The Counsel argued that the revisionist had been charged in the case whereas the co-accused in the case had been acquitted. It was further argued that there was no external or internal injury on the victim and the delay in filing the F.I.R. has not been satisfactorily explained. It was further argued that there was no evidence against the revisionist nor any incriminating material has been mentioned in the report submitted by the District probationary officer.
The contention raised by the respondents:-
The Counsel for the respondent argued that if the revisionist is released on bail, then he might join the company of habitual criminals and that is why he should not be released on bail.
The reasoning of the Allahabad High Court
To arrive at its conclusion, the Court looked into the objective of The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2015 and observed that the main objective of the Act was to keep juveniles out of the company of hardened criminals and to provide them with a safe place.
A reference was also made to Section 12 of The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2015 where provisions related to the assessment of bail plea of a juvenile are mentioned. The Court opined that provisions of Section 12 would have an overriding effect on provisions of bail mentioned in CrPC. as per the provisions of Section 12 bail should be granted to a juvenile unless there is a reasonable ground for plea that the release is likely to bring the juvenile into association with any known criminal or exposed the said juvenile to moral, physical or psychological danger or that his release would defeat the end of justice
The Allahabad High Court further observed that the bail plea of a juvenile could not be rejected mechanically. While considering the plea under Section 12, the juvenile board should have considered things like family background, financial status and previous association with known criminals.
Decision of the Allahabad High Court
The Court observed that keeping in mind the age of the revisionist. Because no records have been placed on record to prove that the juvenile had previously associated with known criminals, the revisionist should be released on bail, and his custody should be handed over to his natural guardian.
Title:- Pankaj vs State Of U.P. And Anr
Case No. CRIMINAL REVISION No. – 3198 of 2019
Date of Order: 05.10.2020
Coram: Hon’ble Justice Suresh Kumar Gupta
Counsel for Revisionist :- Shashi Kant Dwivedi,Om Prakash Singh Counsel for Opposite Party :- G.A.