Wednesday, October 4, 2023

SC Registry in dock: Judges want to know why a plea for anticipatory bail was listed a year late

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court has given its registry officials two weeks to give an explanation on why they took almost a year to list an anticipatory bail hearing when the bench asked for the notice to be returned in four weeks. The order of the court was passed on September 19, 2019.

A three-judge bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and also comprising Justices Ajay Rastogi and Aniruddha Bose, took up the matter for anticipatory bail yesterday, but it was informed by the counsel for the petitioner that there was no interim protection in terms of the order. The petitioner was arrested and subsequently granted regular bail and thus, his anticipatory bail petition has become infructuous.

The court has disposed off the SLP, but has expressed its displeasure over the way the matter was listed almost a year after the order of the court.

The matter was first heard on September 19, 2019 wherein notice was issued. However, the bench had ordered the case to be listed within four weeks, but instead the case came up for hearing yesterday which is almost after one year.

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“We are, however, troubled by the fact that while issuing notice on September 19, 2019, we had made the order returnable in four weeks. The matter was of anticipatory bail. This is the first time the matter has seen the light of the day after almost a year,” said the court.

The court further directed: “The Registry (is) to furnish an explanation on the administrative side as to why the matter was not listed as directed after four weeks, more so, in the nature of matter being of anticipatory bail. The explanation (is to) be furnished within two weeks.”

The Petitioner herein is accused of the alleged offence of cheating with regard to refusal to execute a deed for sale of land against receipt of an advance of Rs 50 lakhs.

The petitioner was released on a provisional bail order passed by the Patna High Court and the provisional bail was to be confirmed after receipt of the entire amount of Rs 50 lakhs.

Against the aforesaid order of the High Court an SLP has been filed before Supreme Court in which an order was passed on September 19, 2019 and therefore notice was issued.

Read the order here;


– India Legal Bureau

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