Supreme Court directs duo accused of various criminal offenses to surrender before the trial court within 15 days

The Supreme Court has directed duo accused for alleged offences house trespass, extortion, criminal intimidation, to surrender before the trial court within 15 days and apply for regular bail. The Court has further directed the Trial Court to hear their bail application expeditiously. 

A two-judge bench of the Supreme court headed by Justice S. Abdul Nazeer and Justice Krishna Murari heard anticipatory bail pleas of Ashok Rawat and his brother Sanjeev Rawat who were accused in the FIR Number 358 of 2020 for the alleged offences punishable under Section 452, 386, 504, 506, 507 Indian Penal Code. 

During the hearing today, Senior Advocate Vibhar Datta Makhija appearing for Petitioners showed the mischievous role of complainant as how he chose to conceal the fact before High Court about filing the application of Section 156(3) before Chief Judicial Magistrate for registration of FIR against Ashok Rawat and Sanjeev Rawat.

Further Sr Adv Vibha submitted that enquiry was conducted and found 156(3) application suspicious, and after that FIR got lodged. Complainant has implicated Ashok and Sanjeev Rawat.

Advocate Preetika Dwivedi, on behalf of State of U.P. submitted before the Bench there were two separate incidents occurred and one has no co relation with other. They should surrender before trial court and apply for regular bail.

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Bench said to the counsel of Petitioner Ashok Rawat that the “chargesheet is already filed and question of granting anticipatory bail does not arise at the stage. You should surrender.”

Vibha Makhija replied that the petitioners are participating and cooperating with the Investigation Officer.

Bench suggested them to apply for regular bail and meanwhile, this court can grant protection for 15 days, then can move for regular bail application.  

Bench said to Preetika, Adv for State of U.P. – “ 

State does not want petitioners Ashok Rawat to be kept in custody and you don’t require them now.” Since chargesheet is already filed and it is not a case that they are habitual offenders. Investigation is over.” 

The Bench then heard the contentions of complainant Madhushankar Aggarwal that the Petitioner will again mercilessly beat him up and after hearing the complainant. “you have to prove your case before court, evidences to be brought up before court and if they found guilty, they can go to jail,” replied the bench. 

There is a judgment of this court (Sushila Aggarawal) which settled down the law that even after filing of chargesheet – anticipatory bail can be granted to accused/Petitioner, the bench pointed out. 

The Bench also observed that complainant is habitual in making complaints, the accused persons qua Petitioners is not only entitled for anticipatory but for regular bail also.

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Previously, the Supreme court had issued notice on their plea for anticipatory bail and granted interim protection to both Ashok Rawat and Sanjeev Rawat vide order dated 29.04.2021. The said FIR for the offences 452,386,504,506,507 IPC was lodged in Hathras Police Station, U.P. on behest of complainant Mr. Madhu shankar Aggarwal.

Background of the Case

The present appeal was filed against the order passed by the Allahabad High Court which had vide its order dated 19.02.2021, dismissed the anticipatory bail application by both accused and held that “applicants are not entitled to be granted anticipatory bail. The offences alleged are prima facie made out from the allegations in the FIR.”

Further the High Court had directed that,

“in case if the applicants appear and surrender before the court below within 90 days and apply for bail, their prayer for bail shall be considered and decided as per the settled law laid by this Court in the case of Amrawati and another Vs. State of U.P. reported in 2004 (57) ALR 290 as well as judgement passed by Hon'ble Apex Court reported in 2009 (3) ADJ 322 (SC) Lal Kamlendra Pratap Singh Vs. State of U.P.” 

The Court had also granted them protection from any coercive action till they surrender and apply for regular bail.