SC: Meticulous examination of evidence not to be done while considering bail plea.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, on 29.10.2019, in the matter of Sangitaben Shaileshbhai Datanta v. The State of Gujrat & Anr. in its order observed that while adjudicating a bail application, the court must not undertake meticulous examination of the evidence collected by the police, or rather order specific tests, the court has to only opine as to whether there is prima facie case against the accused or not.

The Hon’ble Apex Court observed that:

(Para 7) While adjudicating a bail application, Section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 is the guiding principle wherein Court takes into consideration, inter alia,

  • the gravity of the crime
  • the character of the evidence
  • position and status of the accused with reference to the victim and witnesses
  • the likelihood of the accused fleeing from justice and repeating the offence
  • the possibility of his tampering with the witnesses and
  • obstructing the course of justice and such other grounds

Each criminal case presents its own peculiar factual matrix, and therefore, certain grounds peculiar to a particular case may have to be taken into account by the court. However, the court has to only opine as to whether there is prima facie case against the accused. The court must not undertake meticulous examination of the evidence collected by the police, or rather order specific tests.

Copy of order: Order 29-Oct-2018

-Tushar Kaushik

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