District Court Begusarai

“No anticipatory bail in SC-ST act”, Court refuses anticipatory bail to 4 persons

Begusarai(Bihar, India): The SC-ST act court refused to grant anticipatory bail to four persons of the backward community in a case of the SC-ST act.

Fearing arrest, the anticipatory bail request was filed by  Dharmraj Sahni,  Pramod Sahni, Vinod Kumar, and Arvind Sahni in the court seeking immediate relief from the arrest. 

The accused has been booked under 452/341/323/384/379/504/34 of the IPC and 3(1)(r),(s) of the SC/ST (PoA) Act.

During the hearing, the Special Judge of SC/ST (POA) Act Shri Sunil Verma reiterated that section 18 of the act prohibits the benefit of Section 438 of CrPc.

The FIR which was registered in the Balia Police Station reads that the accused, who were armed with deadly weapons, came to the house of the victim and demanded Rs.2 lakh as ‘rangdari’ tax. It is also alleged that out of fear the informant had given Rs.50,000 to one of the co-accused. 

However, the victim failed to give any prima facia evidence which confirms the occurrence of the incident. 

The accused also claimed that they have been falsely implicated in this case due to a land dispute. 

The court while giving the order said that due to specific provision of section 18 of the SC/ST (PoA) Act an anticipatory bail is not maintainable. 

“Considering the facts and circumstances of the case as well as having regard to the decision of the Hon’ble Court in Lalbabu Sah and Others. Vrs. The state of Bihar and also having regard to the specific provision of section 18 of the SC/ST (PoA) Act an anticipatory bail is not maintainable in this case therefore, I am not inclined to give the benefit of the provision of section 438 of the Cr.P.C to the petitioners”, Justice Sunil Verma said in his judgment. 

The judgment now sets confusion as in many cases the anticipatory bail was maintained by the other courts.

What Section 18 of the SC-ST Act says

It has been clearly mentioned that Section 438(grant of bail to person apprehending arrest) of the Code does not apply to persons committing an offense under the SC-ST Act. Therefore the provision of anticipatory bail is not maintainable in these cases.

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