Punjab and Haryana High Court

Punjab and Haryana High Court: In a matter seeking quashing of First Information Report (‘FIR') under Section 482 of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 (‘CrPC') against Times Now's Bhawana Kishore and others, and grant of bail under Section 439 CrPC, Augustine George Masih, J. granted interim bail to Bhawana Kishore and directed authorities to ensure information to the complainant regarding pendency of the instant case.

The matter relates to alleged road accident following casteist remarks against Dalit women by Times Now's team, which was followed by their arrest by Punjab Police. The background story reveals that the team having Bhawana Kishore along with cameraman and driver went to cover a political program of AAP Leader Arvind Kejriwal in Ludhiana.1

It was contended by the petitioners that the FIR dated 5-5-2023 attributed allegations against Bhawana Kishore regarding offence committed under SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 indicating that the petitioners were unknown to the complainant, while insisting on grant of interim bail to Bhawana Kishore. On the other hand, reference was made to Section 15A (3) of SC/ST Act by the State contending that the victim/dependent has a right to reasonable, accurate, and timely and mandatory notice of Court proceedings under the Act.

The Court prima facie viewed that “the offence is not made out when seen in the light of provisions under Section 8(3) of under SC/ST Act.” The Court further added that Bhawana Kishore, a 31-year-old lady and a senior correspondent of National Network deserves to be granted interim bail.

Thus, the Court ordered the release of Bhawana Kishore on interim bail subject to the satisfaction of Magistrate concerned till the next hearing. The Court also directed the Additional Advocate General to ensure information to the complainant regarding pendency of the instant case.

[Bhawana Gupta v. State of Punjab, 2023 SCC OnLine P&H 430, Order dated 6-5-2023]

Order by: Justice Augustine George Masih

Advocates who appeared in this case :

For Petitioners: Senior Advocate R. S. Rai, Senior Advocate Chetan Mittal, Advocate Pawan Narang, Advocate Kunal Mulwani, Advocate Gautam Dutt, Advocate Mayank Aggarwal, Advocate Udit Garg, Advocate Arjun S. Rai, Advocate Farhad Kohli, Advocate Sukhriti Rai

For Respondents: Senior Advocate General Vinod Ghai, Additional Advocate General Gaurav Dhuriwala, Additional Advocate General, Ferry Sofat, Additional Advocate General Jasdev Mehndiratta

1. Times Now, Bhawana Kishore set free | Punjab Sarkar admits to ‘Lapses', https://www.timesnownews.com/videos/times-now/newshour/bhawana-kishore-set-free-punjab-sarkar-admits-to-lapses-vendetta-exposed-by-high-court-video-100109968. Accessed on 10-5-2023.

Must Watch

Justice Shakdher on Obscenity book

safe sex education


Join the discussion

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.