“There is certainly no straitjacket formula by which courts assess a request to grant or deny bail, but the determination of whether a case should be granted bail involves balancing many factors, among which the nature of the offence, the severity of the sentence and a prima facie view of the defendant’s involvement are important,” said Judge Murari, who drafts the judgment for the bench.
Referring to the principles governing bail jurisdiction, he said that normally the supreme court does not interfere with such an order.
“However, it is also incumbent on the High Court to exercise its discretion judiciously, prudently and strictly in accordance with the basic principles laid down in a series of judgments of this court,” he said.
The 25-page verdict discusses in detail the importance of the attribution of reasons by the courts when granting or denying bail to a defendant and indicates that it provides assurance that the relevant factors were taken into account “without regard to extraneous considerations”.
“The importance of attributing a reason for the granting or denial of a bond can never be underestimated. It is prima facie necessary to state the reasons, particularly in cases where of a surety when the accused is charged with a serious offence. Sound reasoning in a particular case is an assurance that the discretion has been exercised by the decision-maker after considering all relevant grounds and ignoring extraneous considerations.” , did he declare.
The requirement to record the reasons is an important safeguard that ensures that the discretion entrusted to the court is exercised judiciously, he said.
The verdict also referred to the principles governing the granting of bail and the circumstances that arose and gave examples where the court should not grant such a remedy to a defendant.
“Jurisdiction to grant bail must be exercised with caution based on well-established principles having regard to the facts and circumstances of each case,” he said.
Factors such as the existence of a prima facie or reasonable basis to believe that the accused committed the offence, the nature and seriousness of the charge, the severity of the penalty if convicted must be taken into account account when deciding on these pleas, it said.
The danger of flight, the character, demeanor, means, position and position of the accused, the likelihood of the offense recurring, the reasonable apprehension that witnesses will be influenced and the danger, of course, that the Justice being thwarted by the granting of bail were also to be taken into account, he said.
The Supreme Court said that bail cancellation cannot be limited to the occurrence of circumstances and if the court granting bail considers irrelevant matters and ignores relevant matters, then it can be voided.
“Where the court granting bail overlooks the influential position of the accused in relation to the abuse victim or witnesses, particularly where there is abuse of prima facie position and power over the victim,” the bail cannot be granted either, he said.
The verdict fell on an appeal by Deepak Yadav whose father was shot dead by accused Harjeet Yadav in a locality in Lucknow on January 9, 2021.
The accused was released on bail by the High Court on October 22, 2021, pending trial.