Home Legal NewsRecent Development Payment of fine cannot be imposed as a condition for the grant of bail: Jharkhand HC

Payment of fine cannot be imposed as a condition for the grant of bail: Jharkhand HC

by Shreya
Jharkhand HC

Justice Ananda Sen passed an order that payment of a fine cannot be imposed as a condition for the grant of bail, terming the same as bad in law given the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), while dealing with a plea challenging a Ranchi Judicial Commissioner’s decision to impose a fine of Rs 60,000 to be paid to the Excise Department as a condition for granting bail to a man accused of illegally storing liquor.

The Court ruled,

“Since imposition of fine … can only be imposed after conclusion of trial and that too after convicting an accused, by way of sentence, the aforesaid condition of imposition of fine passed by the Court below is bad in law… This condition has got no nexus with the object and purpose for which a bail is granted.”

A fine is a punitive measure that is imposed only when the guilt of the accused is proved and he is convicted of the charge framed against him.

Read Also: Bail on paying Rs 35,000 to PM CARES fund; download Aarogya Setu app: Jharkhand HC

The judge noted that

“unless the guilt is proved and accused is convicted, no punishment can be imposed and fine which is in fact a sentence cannot be awarded.”

The Court observed that,

“It is well settled that while dealing with the bail application, the finding, which is given therein while disposing the bail application is not conclusive finding so far as it relates to the guilt of the accused… Findings are prima facie in nature, which should not have any bearing in the trial of the accused. The accused is convicted or acquitted on the basis of the evidence, which is led in course of trial. The order passed in the bail is not a final judgment in the trial.”

The Judge also referred to the Supreme Court rulings in Munish Bhasin & Others versus State (Government of NCT of Delhi) & Another and Sumit Mehta versus State (NCT of Delhi) to pinpoint the kind of conditions that may be imposed on an applicant by a criminal court while granting bail, i.e.

  • Conditions to secure the presence of the accused before the investigating officer or before the court;
  • Conditions to prevent him from fleeing the course of justice;
  • Conditions to prevent him from tampering with the evidence or to prevent him from inducing or intimidating the witnesses so as to dissuade them from disclosing the facts before the police or court;
  • Conditions restricting the movements of the accused in a particular area or locality or to maintain law and order, etc.

The Bench concluded that while a sessions judge may impose any condition s/he sees fit while granting bail under Sections 437 and 439 of the CrPC, such condition would not extend to an irrelevant condition such as the imposition of a fine. Therefore, the judge in the instant matter said,

“I am constrained to hold that the condition, which has been imposed upon the petitioner to the effect that he should pay a fine of Rs. 60,000/- (Rupees Sixty Thousand) by e-challan as a condition of bail, is not in accordance with law and is liable to be set aside.”

The Court further emphasized,

“The Court should not be swayed by the submissions made by the parties, rather, should evaluate and base its order on the correct perspective and principle of law.”

Related Articles

Leave a Comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

× Chat with us on WhatsApp