Bail Application should balance between social interest and personal liberty of the accused: Special NIA Court Mumbai
By Neha Virmani
“Bail application cannot be allowed solely or exclusively on the ground that the fundamental principle of criminal jurisprudence is that the accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty”
The Special Investigation Agency(INA) at Mumbai observed that accusations against 70-year-old Scholar and Dalit Right activist accused, Anand Teltumbde related to BhimaKoregaon – Elgar Parishad case is prima facie true.
It was alleged that Teltumbde was a closely related and an active member of the banned CPI (Moist) Group. Further NIA has accused that Teltumbde was present at the conference of 31 December 2017 which led to caste-based violence at Bhima Koregaon. Thus, he was booked under section 121,121A, 124A, 153A, 505(1)(b), 117, 120b r/w 34 of IPC and sections 13, 16, 17, 18, 18B, 39, and 40 of UAPA along with 14 other activities one of which was Father Stan Swamy.
Advocate SudeepPasbola appearing as counsel on behalf of Teltumbde applied for bail on merit in Special court on 13 January, 2021and stated that Teltumbde is seeking bail on the ground that the investigating agencies and NIA failed to make out a case alleged against him in the first information report (FIR) and charge-sheet and there was not enough evidence with NIA to prove the charges were true.
However, the bench of Special NIA Judge DE KOTHALIKAR, in the order opined that bail cannot be solely given on the principles of criminal jurisprudence but should maintain a fine balance between social interest and personal liberty of the accused as expounded in the case of Siddharam Satlingappa Mhetre Vs State Of Maharashtra.
The court pointed out that the legal principle, bail is a rule and jail is an exception depends on the facts of the case.
The court found that the material evidence shows Teltumbde’s “complicity in the crime”, thus the bar under Section 43-D of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, cancels out the application for bail