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A convict who has challenged his conviction under Section 374 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 is not entitled to the benefit of Section 436 A of the Code: Bombay High Court.

The Bombay High Court on 28th of August in the year 2020 passed a judgment against a convict who filed for an application of bail for his third time. This was seen in the case of Maksud Sheikh Gaffur Sheikh And Another Vs State Of Maharashtra, Thr. P.S.O. Ramnagar Police Station, Chandrapur (Criminal Application No. 270/2020) and the case was presided over by The Honourable Mr. Chief Justice Ravi K. Deshpande and The Honourable Mr. Justice S.B. Shukre.

FACTS OF THE CASE:

The case deals with an applicant seeking his bail under Section 436-A of Code of Criminal Procedure in a pending appeal. The applicant was prosecuted and upon conclusion of his trial was convicted by the judgment, delivered by Additional Sessions Judge, Chandrapur and was convicted for offences punishable under Sections 506-II, 450, 326, 452, 354-A read with Sections 34, 149, 109 and 114 of the Indian Penal Code and also under Section 66E of the Information Technology Act, 2000. Various terms of imprisonments, ranging from three years to ten years was awarded to him. During pendency of the appeal, the applicant filed an application under Section 389 of the Code seeking suspension of sentences imposed upon him and his release on bail. The application was rejected by the Division Bench of the Bombay High court. Liberty, however, was granted to the applicant to file an independent application seeking bail on medical grounds, if any. The liberty so granted to the applicant was exhausted by him later and his bail application was rejected by the Division Bench. Having failed to get any reprieve twice, the applicant renewed his effort to secure his release on bail during pendency of appeal, this time on a new ground in Section 436-A of the Code. It is the contention of the applicant that as he has completed in jail a period equivalent to one half of the maximum imprisonment imposed upon him, he is entitled to be released on bail by virtue of his right under Section 436-A of the Code.

The Division Bench, while considering the application of the applicant has found itself in disagreement with the view taken by the co-ordinate Bench in a case and it has referred the matter for answering of the question to a Larger Bench and the question is as follows

“Whether a convict who has challenged his conviction under Section 374 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 is entitled to the benefit of Section 436 A of the Code?”

JUDGEMENT:

The court in its judgement said no a convict who has challenged his conviction under Section 374 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 is not entitled to the benefit of Section 436 A of the Code. The court also said since the Honourable Division Bench has rejected the applicant’s prayer for suspension of execution of sentence for the third time, it is highly unlikely that any further prayer in this regard shall be favourably considered. Hence the appeal is dismissed by the court.

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY TANAV ZACHARIAH.

Click here to view the Judgement.

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