The Chhattisgarh High Court on Tuesday while allowing bail to a juvenile, observed that the gravity of the offence cannot be made a ground for rejection of bail to a juvenile.
A single-judge bench of Justice Rajesh Chandra Singh Samant was hearing a criminal revision petition filed by a juvenile through his father Haldhar Gonda, challenging the order dated 05.01.2021, passed by Additional Sessions Judge (F.T.C.)/Children Court, Bastar at Jagdalpur (C.G.), in Criminal Appeal No.37/2020, whereby the appeal preferred by the juvenile against the order of Principal Magistrate, Juvenile Justice Board, District Bastar in Criminal Case No. 39 of 2020 dated 25.11.2020, in which the juvenile has been denied bail.
In the petition, it was submitted that the juvenile was falsely implicated in this case. The social status report had been in favour of the juvenile despite that the Board and the Appellate Court both have given consideration to the gravity of the offence and rejected the application. Hence, the orders passed by the Board as well as by the Appellate Court are erroneous.
The state counsel opposed the petition, submitting that looking at the gravity of the case, the applicant is not entitled for grant of bail. The Board and the appellate Court have not committed any error in passing the rejection order. Hence, the revision petition be dismissed.
After hearing the counsel for the parties and persuading the documents placed on record, the High Court observed that the gravity of the offence cannot be made a ground for rejection of bail to a juvenile. There are specific circumstances to be made out according to the proviso to Section 12 (1) of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.
According to the social status report given by the Probation Officer, there appears to be no such circumstances present. Hence, this Court is of the view that the Board as well as the Appellate Court both have committed error by not appreciating the report of the Probation Officer. Therefore, the orders passed by the Board as well as by the Appellate Court both are not sustainable.”
“The order dated 05.01.2021, passed by learned Additional Sessions Judge (F.T.C.)/Children Court, Bastar at Jagdalpur (C.G.), in Criminal Appeal No.37/2020, is set-aside. It is directed that on furnishing a surety of Rs 25,000 along with a bond of same amount, which is to be of his father to the satisfaction of the concerned Juvenile Justice Board, for his appearance as and when directed, then the applicant shall be given in custody of his natural guardian,” ordered the High Court while allowing the Revision Petition.