While Considering Application For Remission, Courts Should Provide Adequate Reasoning- SC Reiterates
The Supreme Court has reiterated that while considering the application for remission, the Courts should provide their opinion after taking into consideration the relevant factors that govern the grant of remission as laid down in Laxman Naskar vs. Union of India (2002) 2 SCC 595.
The Bench of Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Bela M. Trivedi held that “the petitioners’ applications for remission are required to be reconsidered by the respondent authorities afresh. Accordingly, we direct the Special Judge, Durg to provide an opinion on the applications of the petitioners afresh accompanied by adequate reasoning after taking into consideration the relevant factors that govern the grant of remission as laid down in Laxman Naskar vs. Union of India (supra).”
In this case, the petitioners were convicted for offences under Section 147, 148, 302/149, 307/149 IPC and Section 3(2)(5) of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Corruption) Act and were convicted and were undergoing the sentence of life imprisonment. The petitioners had submitted applications for their premature release under Section 432(2) CrPC to the Jail Superintendent. The concerned Sessions Court which had convicted the petitioners, while delivering its opinion, rejected the application to allow remission of the remaining sentence.
Aggrieved, the petitioners had invoked Article 32 of the Constitution seeking issuance of appropriate writ, order or direction commanding the respondents for presenting the case of the petitioners to the sentencing Court for fresh consideration.
Advocate Mohd. Irshad Hanif appearing for the petitioner apprised the Court with the fact that one of the co-accused Ram Chander, who was also convicted along with the petitioners in the said case had preferred a wit petition wherein the Court had directed the respondents to reconsider the case of the said petitioner and directed the Special Judge to provide an opinion afresh accompanied by adequate reasoning after taking into consideration the relevant factors laid down in Laxman Naskar case (Supra) and the Special Judge, therefore, considering the guidelines opined inter alia that the sentence of the prisoner Ram Chander (co-accused) could be set aside and accordingly recommended to remit his sentence.
Advocate Vishal Prasad appeared for the respondent.
The Court noted that in Ram Chander’s case, the Coordinate Bench had considered in detail the requirement of the factors to be considered by the Presiding Judge while giving opinion under Section 432(2) Cr.P.C., and the powers of the appropriate Government to suspend or remit sentences under Sections 432 and 433-A of Cr.PC.
“These factors include assessing (i) whether the offence affects the society at large; (ii) the probability of the crime being repeated; (iii) the potential of the convict to commit crimes in future; (iv) if any fruitful purpose is being served by keeping the convict in prison; and (v) the socio-economic condition of the convict’s family.”
The Court after considering the factors, observed that “Since the case of the present petitioners is also similar to the case of the co-accused Ram Chander, in as much as the Presiding Officer’s opinions contained in the letters dated 02.07.2021, 10.08.2021 and 01.10.2021 do not contain reasons with regard to the factors to be taken into consideration as laid down in case of Laxman Naskar vs. Union of India (supra), we propose to pass similar order as passed in the case of co-accused Ram Chander.”
Therefore, the Court directed the Special Judge, Durg to provide an opinion on the applications of the petitioners afresh accompanied by adequate reasoning.
The Court further said that after receiving the opinion of the Special Judge Durg, the State of Chhattisgarh should take a final decision on the petitioners’ applications for remission afresh as expeditiously as possible and not later than one month of receiving the opinion of the Special Judge.
Accordingly, the petition was disposed of.
Cause Title- Jaswant Singh & Ors. v. The State of Chhattisgarh & Anr.