Vishalkumar Shyamjibhai Chauhan
State of Gujarat
In the aforesaid context, I would like to issue few directions.
I direct the Magistrates that when accused punishable with up to seven years imprisonment are produced before them remands may be granted only after the Magistrate satisfy themselves that the application for remand by the police officer has been made in a bonafide manner and the reasons for seeking remand mentioned in the case diary are in accordance with the requirements of Sections 41 (1) (b) and 41A of the Code of Criminal Procedure and further there is concrete material in existence to substantiate the ground mentioned for seeking remand. Even where the accused himself surrenders or where the investigation has been completed and the Magistrate needs to take the accused in judicial custody as provided under Section 170(1) and Section 41 (1) (b) (ii) (e) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the prolonged imprisonment at this initial stage, when the accused has not been adjudged guilty, may not be called for, and the Magistrates and Sessions Courts are to consider the bails expeditiously and not to mechanically refuse the same, especially in the short sentence cases punishable with up to seven years imprisonment unless the allegations are grave and there is any legal impediment in allowing the bail, as laid down in Lal Kamlendra Pratap Singh v. the State of U.P., (2009) 4 SCC 437, and Sheoraj Singh @ Chuttan v. State of U.P. and others, 2009 (65) ACC 781.
The facility of releasing the accused on interim bail pending consideration of their regular bails may also be accorded by the Magistrates and Sessions Judges in appropriate cases.
The magistrate may also furnish information to the Registrar General of the High Court through the District Judge, in case he is satisfied that a particular police officer has been persistently arresting the accused in cases punishable with up to seven-year terms, in a mechanical or malafide and dishonest manner, in contravention of the requirements of Sections 41 (1) (b) and 41A of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and thereafter the matter may be placed by the Registrar in this case, so that appropriate directions may be issued to the DGP to take action against such errant police officer for his persistent default or this court may initiate contempt proceedings against the defaulting police officer.
The District Judges should also be directed to impress upon the Magistrates not to routinely grant remands to the police officers seeking remand for the accused if the pre-conditions for granting the remand mentioned in Sections 41 (1) (b) and 41A of the Code of Criminal Procedure are not disclosed in cases punishable with seven-year terms, or where the police officer appears to be seeking remand for the accused in a malafide manner in the absence of concrete material.