Only when convicted presumption of innocence gets replaced by judgement of conviction, till then it’s Innocent till proven guilty. : Allahabad High Court

It is a well-established legal principle that a man cannot be declared guilty unless his guilt is proven through the use of credible evidence. It is a rule to detain someone after determining his guilt. However, before finding the accused guilty, it is not always possible or permissible to conclude that custody of that person is required based on the charge-sheet or the process issued under Section 204 in a complaint case. Mentioned by Justice Siddharth of Allahabad High Court in the matter of Shivam vs. State of UP and another [CRIMINAL MISC ANTICIPATORY BAIL APPLICATION U/S 438 CR.P.C. No. – 2110 of 2021]

This order was held in the case where the informant is a journalist, according to the F.I.R. He noticed a crowd gathered at the bus stop. He asked the police officers in the Dial 112 vehicle standing nearby to clear the crowd. The crowd was dispersed. Following that, some goons from the area, namely Prashant, son of Shyam Kishore Tiwari, and Shibbi @ Shivam Tiwari (applicant), son of Mahant Tiwari, came and abused the informant by using words like “dhed chamaar,” and also abused him in the name of his mother and sister because they were aware of the applicant’s caste. They threatened him with death if he continued to engage in journalism.

According to learned counsel for the applicant, the applicant has been falsely implicated in this case. He then claimed that no specific role in the F.I.R. was assigned to the applicant. Without gathering any evidence against the applicant, a charge sheet was filed against him on 12.05.2020, and cognisance was taken on 20.11.2020. There is no role assigned to him regarding intimidation or insult of the informant in public view, and thus the applicant’s implication for the offence under Section 3(1)(r)(s) of the S.C./S.T. Act is without foundation.

Learned counsel of opposition has objected to the applicant’s request for anticipatory bail. He has argued that, given the gravity of the allegations levelled against the applicant, he is not entitled to anticipatory bail. The applicant’s concern is not supported by any evidence on file. Anticipatory bail cannot be granted solely on the basis of fictitious fear.

In the present case, based on the Investigating Officer’s statement, this Court concludes that the disputed incident occurred on 04.04.2020, during the first corona wave that swept the country, and the informant stated that, as a journalist, he had the crowd removed with the assistance of police because there was a risk of infection spreading. Following that, the applicant and co-accused persons threatened him not to become a big journalist, and he was subjected to caste-related abuses, as were his mother and sister. When he tried to speak, they screamed “chamaar,” and he was beaten with his legs and fists.

When he sounded the alarm, Kamlesh and Rajbir Singh arrived and rescued him. The accused then fled the scene, threatening him with death. Both accused individuals have a history of misbehaving with the residents of the area. The statements of other witnesses recorded by the Investigating Officer back up the allegations made above. 

As a result, in light of the conditions outlined in this decision, this anticipatory bail application should be denied.

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