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Anticipatory bail can be granted in case of Sec-304 B IPC to the parents of the husband if they live separately from the deceased: Patna High Court

Where there is an apprehension of arrest under the allegation of dowry death under Sec-304 B of  IPC upon the parents of the husband can they be granted bail under sec-438 of CRPC? A single-judge bench comprising of Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah adjudicating in the matter of Mira Devi vs. The State of Bihar (CRIMINAL MISCELLANEOUS No.34640 of 2021) dealt with an issue of whether to grant anticipatory bail u/s-438 of CrPC.

The Petitioners were alleged of killing their daughter-in-law. It was submitted that the Petitioners had no role in any wrongdoing and even the death of the deceased was due to natural causes. During the investigation, it was found that the deceased was suffering from mental illness and the post-mortem report was collusive. The Petitioners complained that the doctor who conducted the post-mortem was relieved from performing post-mortem and was transferred. The Petitioners also submitted that they have got separate rations cards from 2008 and it clearly states that the son of the petitioner, i.e. the deceased husband was not living with the Petitioners. The counsel on behalf of the petitioner also submitted that petitioners have no role in the crime and they have been falsely implicated and if even there was some kind of foul-play, they cannot be held responsible in any way for whatever happened as they were living separately from the husband and the deceased. The inquest report as well as the post-mortem report states that there is only a strangulation mark on the neck and there were no antemortem injuries on the body of the deceased. The petitioners contended that if the person would have been forcibly strangulated or hanged, there would be some kind of resistance causing antemortem injuries on the body. No such mark was found on the body, hence it can be established that the petitioners should be exonerated from the liability.

The court granted anticipatory bail to the Petitioners and directed ” in the event of arrest or surrender before the Court below within six weeks from today, the petitioners be released on bail upon furnishing bail bonds of Rs. 25,000/- (twenty five thousand) each with two sureties of the like amount each to the satisfaction of the learned SDJM, Raxaul, Motihari (East Champaran) in Raxaul PS Case No. 176 of 2020, subject to the conditions laid down in Section 438(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 and further, (i) that one of the bailors shall be a close relative of the petitioners and (ii) that the petitioners shall co-operate with the police/prosecution and the Court. Failure to co-operate shall lead to cancellation of their bail bonds.”

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