Severity of Punishment Should be Taken into Account While Considering Bail Application: SC

In a recent case, the Apex Court has set aside Kerala High Court’s order that granted bail to a person who is accused of murdering a lady doctor.

The Bench comprising Hon’ble Justice Indira Banerjee and Hon’ble Justice Krishna Murari stated that the seriousness of the charge is a relevant consideration while granting bail.

As per the prosecution, the accused (Mahesh) stabbed the doctor at her clinic. During the incident, the father of the doctor was also present. The Sessions Court dismissed the bail application, but the High Court allowed it.

The State approached the Supreme Court, and the Bench observed that the Court’s power to grant bail u/s 439 of CrPC was discretionary and the said discretion should be exercised judiciously. The Bench further observed that the seriousness of the charge is a relevant consideration while granting bail.

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Hon’ble Court noted that the High Court did not consider the elaborate reasons given by Sessions Court for rejecting bail. The Bench stated that the High Court did not apply its mind to the severity of the punishment in case of conviction, and it had granted bail solely on the ground that the man was in jail for some time.

Lastly, the Bench opined that the High Court misappreciated the object, scope and ambit of directions issued by it due to the pandemic. It further noted that the Court should not have granted bail to the accused as even the charge sheet was not filed in the instant case.

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