The Allahabad High Court has said an application for passport cannot be rejected due to the pendency of the appeal of the state.
The Division Bench of Justice Ashwani Kumar Mishra and Justice Vikram D. Chauhan passed this order while hearing a petition filed by Pramod Kumar Rajbhar.
The petitioner had applied for passport but his application apparently has not been considered on account of pendency of the State appeal against the order dated December 23, 2020 passed in Sessions Trial (State of U.P. Vs. Pramod Kumar).
The Court observed that the criminal proceedings were initiated against the petitioners in case under Sections 354-A, 506 and 376 IPC and Section 3/4 of the POCSO Act, Police Station Pakadi District Ballia, which has ultimately led to petitioner’s acquittal by the competent Sessions Court order dated December 23, 2020.
The application for grant of passport apparently has been withheld only because Government Appeal has been filed in the matter.
The Court said that the case of the petitioner would not fall in any of the category inasmuch as there is already an order of acquittal passed in his favour which has not been reversed in appeal. No order prejudicial to petitioner’s interest otherwise has been passed. So long as the order of acquittal remains, the petitioner’s innocence would be presumed and, therefore, petitioner’s application cannot be declined merely on account of pendency of Government Appeal.
“In view of the deliberations made above, the petition stands disposed of with a direction upon respondents to process petitioner’s application for grant of passport in light of the above observations, within a period of three months from the date of presentation of certified copy of the order,”
-the court ordered.
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