Process Of Criminal Law Not For Arm-Twisting & Money Recovery When Prayer For Bail Is Opposed- Reiterates SC
The Supreme Court has reiterated that the process of criminal law could not be utilized for arm-twisting and money recovery, particularly when the prayer for bail was being opposed.
The Bench of Justice Dinesh Maheswari and Justice Hrishikesh Roy observed that "We have indicated on more than one occasion that the process of criminal law, particularly in matters of grant of bail, is not akin to money recovery proceedings but what has been noticed in the present case carries the peculiarities of its own. We would reiterate that the process of criminal law cannot be utilised for arm-twisting and money recovery, particularly while opposing the prayer for bail.”
In this case, the respondents were accused of committing offences under Section 406 and Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code and Sections 3 and 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act. The Patna High Court recorded the offer made by one of the accused of making payment of Rs. 75000/- to the informant (petitioner) and allowed the pre-arrest bail to the respondents.
Advocate Shaurya Sahay appeared for the petitioner.
It was contended by the petitioner that after the process under Section 82 CrPC was issued, prayer for pre-arrest bail ought not to have been granted; and that it had clearly been a case of illegal demand of money as also cheating of the petitioner.
The Apex Court observed that "there is no justification in adopting such a course that for the purpose of being given the concession of pre-arrest bail, the person apprehending arrest ought to make payment. Recovery of money is essentially within the realm of civil proceedings."
The Court also observed that “Putting it in other words, in a given case, the concession of pre-arrest bail or regular bail could be declined even if the accused has made payment of the money involved or offers to make any payment; conversely, in a given case, the concession of pre-arrest bail or regular bail could be granted irrespective of any payment or any offer of payment.”
Therefore, the Court refused to interfere with the order of the High Court, set aside the condition of payment of Rs. 75,000/- and noted that these criminal proceedings were being prosecuted only as money recovery proceedings.
Accordingly, the petition was dismissed.
Cause Title- Bimla Tiwari v. State of Bihar & Ors.