The Supreme Court has set aside the bail order of a murder accused who was granted bail essentially on the consideration that identically placed co-accused persons were already granted bail.

The Bench of Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Krishna Murari was adjudicating upon an appeal challenging the grant of bail to a murder accused who was accused of murdering appellant's son.

Advocate Anilendra Pandey represented the appellant whereas Advocate Shashank Shekhar Singh represented the State. Advocate Aftab Ali Khan represented the accused.

The Counsel appearing for appellant argued that the High Court granted bail to the accused only for the reason of the orders passed in favor of the co-accused persons. It was further submitted that the order so passed by the High Court in favour of the co-accused was not approved by the Supreme Court.

The counsel for the State duly supported the submissions made on behalf of the appellant and submitted that the impugned order deserves to be set aside.

The Supreme Court noted that "…the principal part of submissions before the High Court on behalf of the present respondent No. 2, while seeking bail, had been that the co- accused persons had been granted bail and he was entitled to the same relief on the ground of parity because his case was standing on identical footing. The other submissions had been that the respondent No. 2 was in custody since 02.09.2019; that he had no criminal history; and that trial was likely to take time. The High Court did not consider any other aspect of the matter at all and proceeded to grant bail to the respondent No. 2 only for the reason that the so-called identically placed co-accused persons had already been granted bail."

Moreover the Court noted "…when the bail granted to co-accused person has been disapproved by this Court and such grant of bail to co-accused had been the only reason for which the bail was granted to the respondent No. 2, the impugned order is liable to be set aside."

Therefore the Court set aside the order granting bail and directed the accused to surrender. The Court further observed that if the said accused applies for bail afresh after surrendering and at an appropriate stage, such an application may be considered on its own merits.

Cause Title- Aminuddin v. State of Uttar Pradesh & Anr.

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