All HC | Bail under Gangs Act. Whether satisfaction under S. 19(4)(b) is mandatory? Court answers

Allahabad High Court: Saurabh Shyam Shamsheri, J., held that satisfaction under Section 19(4)(b) of the Gangs Act is a mandatory requirement for bail.

The instant bail application was presented by the accused for crime under Sections 2/3 of Uttar Pradesh Gangs and Anti-Social Action Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986 [Gang Band Act].

Main function of the gang is committing heinous crime by spreading fear and terror in public for their material benefit against whom no one of the public is ready to report and testify. A number of lawsuits have been registered against them at various police stations. Hence it is absolutely necessary to take action against the gang to control anti-social activities.

Bail

The principle of law is that “bail is the rule and jail is the exception”. Bail can neither be accepted or rejected by any mechanical order, as it not only relates to freedom of the person against whom criminal proceedings are going on, but this punishment is also related to the interest of justice system and also ensure that those who commit crimes are not given the opportunity to obstruct justice.

Bench noted that applicant was a habitual criminal who used to commit same type of crime.

As per Sections 2 (b) and (c) of the “Gangs Act”, the applicant is also a member of a gang which is single or collectively anti-social who commits punishable offenses under Chapter 16 or Chapter 17 or Chapter 22 of the Penal Code, 1860.

Court stated that the crime committed by the applicant was punishable under Chapter 17 of the IPC.

High Court held that applicant had a detailed criminal history and there is no dilemma in reaching the conclusion that he is a habitual criminal.  Therefore, there is no reasonable basis for this Court to be resolved that the applicant is not likely to commit any offense while on bail.

“…the Gang Act is a specific act, in which special provisions related to grant of bail have been made, which are described in section 19 (4) (b). Bail cannot be granted under this Act without complying with those provisions. The Act also clarifies that this provision is in addition to the terms of the grant of bail under the Penal Code, and as previously analyzed the method of bail in which certain persons are allowed while granting or disallowing bail.” 

While concluding, Court held that before granting bail under the Act, two conditions which need to be resolved are absent in the instant case.

Hence, the present bail application was cancelled. [Sabir Khan v. State of U.P., 2021 SCC OnLine All 411, decided on 21-05-2021]

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