Kerala High Court
Kerala High Court
Litigation News

Imposition of condition to deposit cash for Bail unjust: Kerala HC quashes directive to contribute to COVID-19 Fund for grant of Bail

While granting bail, a Thalassery Sessions Judge had directed the petitioner to deposit an amount of Rs 25,000 towards the Corona Relief Fund. The petitioner challenged this condition before the Kerala High Court.

Meera Emmanuel

A condition imposed on bail applicant to contribute towards COVID-19 relief funds for the grant of bail was quashed on Tuesday by the Kerala High Court as improper and unjust (Chinna Rao Swayamvarappu vs. State of Kerala and ors.).

Justice C Dias passed an order to this effect while relying on the Supreme Court's ruling in Moti Ram v. State of Madhya Pradesh, whereby the top Court had held that the imposition of cash security or deposit of any amount for grant of bail is unjust, irregular and improper.

In view of the same, the Single Judge held,

"In view of the above categoric declaration of law, I find that Condition No.2 imposed by the learned Sessions Judge, that the petitioner should deposit an amount of Rs 25,000/- towards the Corona Relief Fund is improper and unjust. Hence, I quash the said condition. Nevertheless, the petitioner shall comply with all the other conditions contained in the impugned order. "
Kerala High Court

The judge also noted that it is trite law that the grant of bail is a rule and that jail is only an exception, while quashing the cash deposit condition set by a Thalassery Sessions Judge for the grant of bail.

"Undisputedly, the petitioner had applied and was granted bail under Sec.167(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, which is his indefeasible right", Justice Dias added.

The High Court disposed of the plea after directing the Police to grant permission to the petitioner and his sureties to undertake travel necessary to execute a bond to secure his release on bail in Thalassery.

This direction was issued given that both the sureities proposed by the petitioner ahailed in another district, Thrissur. As such, the petitioner's counsel pointed out that without Court permission, the police may not grant permission for travel to Thalassery amid the COVID-19 lockdown.

Read the order:

Chinna Rao Swayamvarappu v. State of Kerala and ors..pdf
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