It should also be remembered that the legislature used, for the purposes of the bail, ‘reasonable reasons for believing’ rather than ‘evidence’ to mean that the court dealing with the bail can only satisfy it as to whether a genuine case against the accused exists and that the prosecution can produce prima facie evidence in support. At this stage, it is not exempt from having proof that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, was referred by Justice Parthivjyoti Saikia of the Gauhati High Court in the matter of Saroj Sharma versus State of Assam [Bail Appln./399/2021]
The following order was passed for the facts relating to the arrest of petitioners as a publicity advertisement was published by the State Level Police Recruitment Board requesting an online application for 597 police S.I. positions in Assam Police from the eligible candidates. Some 66,000 candidates have downloaded E-Admit cards for examination, but the question papers have previously been leaked and circulated in WhatsApp which has resulted in the cancellation of the written test. The President of the Recruitment Board for State Police has submitted the FIR, alleging the above. In the FIR, the informant said he had received the leakage information via a WhatsApp message from Sri Gautam Mech.
An inquiry was carried out by the police. Several people have been detained. Finally, the charging sheet was filled by the police. It may be pointed out that certain people who are indicated on Page No. 4/15 as being charged in the indictment have never been arrested by the police. They were summoned by the following court and released under bail. Indeed, Special Judge Assam has already released 26 people charged under bail. Saroj Sarma, the petitioner’s bail application was dismissed by the following court.
Since the specific allegations were Sri Saroj Sharma has found himself to be one of the leading defendants along with defendants Rubul Hazarika, Prasanta Kumar Dutta, Kumar Sanjit Krishna and others who have involved themselves, by way of Whatsapp messages and other means, in the offence of leaking from the question paper the SI(UB) written exam for police officers.
On behalf of the present petitioners, learned counsel relied upon the following decisions: (2014) 8 SCC 273: Arnesh Kumar Vs. State of Bihar & Anr. (2020) 10 SCC 616: Bikramjit Singh Vs. State of Punjab (2002) 9 SCC 372: Laloo Prasad @ Laloo Prasad Yadav Vs. State of Jharkhand 2020 SCC Online SC 964: Arnab Manoranjan Goswami Vs. State of Maharashtra & Ors. (2019) 14 SCC 599 : Achpal @ Ramswaroop & Anr. Vs. State of Rajasthan (2012) 1 SCC 40: Sanjay Chandra Vs. Central Bureau of Investigation
Learned State Counsel, Assam relied upon the following decisions: (1989) 1 SCC 235: Sube Singh & Ors. Vs. State of Haryana & Ors. (1969) 3 SCC 429: Mohd. Hussain Umar Kochra & Ors. Vs. K.S. Dalipsinghji & Ors. AIR 1961 SC 1241: The State of Andhra Pradesh Vs. Kandimalla Subbaiah & Ors.
By keeping in consideration the case of R v Hildebrandt, the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Victoria, Australia has noted: “Judicial exposures are not fully uniform about the meaning of the parity principle. The word “principle of parity” is used by the authorities concerned in at least two ways. First, to acknowledge that cases like this should be treated equally (itself an emanation of equal justice). In this sense, it comprises a mirror statement that should also be treated as such, and that disparate culpability or circumstances may impose a different provision. Second, the phrase used is the obligation to consider the ‘appropriate comparability’ of frauds.”
The court held after carefully considering the discussions of both sides and concluded that before me all the materials were carefully considered. Page No. 15/15 Question Paper Leak harms our young generation’s future. The scams involve millions of rupees and cannot be compared with this act. The paper leak of questions is an organised crime. This is a violation of society as a whole. This court is satisfied that the present petitioners are prima facie informed. This Court, therefore, finds no reason to accept the petitioners’ prayer. Saroj Sarma and Diban Deka are therefore rejected for bail application.