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Absence of Applicant with or without sufficient cause – Abuse of liberty of bail : Allahabad High Court

If the applicant abuses his liberty of bail during the trial, and a proclamation under Section 82 Cr.P.C. is issued to secure his presence, and the applicant fails to appear before the court on the date fixed in such proclamation, the trial court shall initiate proceedings against him in accordance with the law, under Section 174-A of the Indian Penal Code, said Justice Om Prakash Vii of the Allahabad High Court in the matter of Rahul Kothari v. Serious fraud Investigation [CRIMINAL MISC. BAIL APPLICATION No. – 36542 of 2020].

The order was issued on the application filed by the learned counsel for the interim bail of his applicant as both parents of the applicant were Covid positive and there is no one to look after the house and applicant being the only son. But the Sri Gyan Prakash, learned Senior Advocate of the opposite side, argued that the applicant’s regular bail prayer could not be entertained because the applicant had not filed a regular bail application before the court below. It was then argued that the impugned order issued by the lower court on the default bail application contains no illegality, infirmity, or perversity. The contention is also that the provision of Section 167 Cr.P.C. itself is sufficiently clear, and default bail can only be granted if the charge sheet/complaint was not filed within the specified period. It is also argued that if the charge sheet was filed within the prescribed time frame, a default bail prayer cannot be granted. Sri Gyan Prakash learned Sr. Advocate also referred to the dates and events of the filing of the complaint and date of the first remand in the matter and argued that the complaint was filed within sixty days but the applicant did not show their presence in the court for the same matter. In the present matter huge amount i.e. Rs. 4168 crores have become N.P.A. due to modus operandi adopted by the applicant and other co-accused. Bail order passed in respect of the FIR lodged on the part of the C.B.I. was not related to the Companies Act, therefore, regular bail prayer is also not liable to be allowed. Furthermore, The applicant is also accused of abusing his position as promoter-director, resulting in a wrongful loss of Rs. 4188 crores to public sector banks. He used the corporate identity to commit fraud by rotating funds obtained through Letter of Credit discounting in order to capitalise on the interest arbitrage available between LC issuance and discounting charges and interest on fixed deposits. This entire conspiracy was carried out under the guise of performing MT.

On hearing the following discussions court held that,  “Thus, on the basis of discussion made herein-above and keeping in view the entire facts and circumstances of the case and also the amount involved in the matter which has become N.P.A., the court is of the view that no case for regular bail is made out. The prayer for regular bail is also hereby rejected.”

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