madras high court

Madras High Court: In criminal original petitions filed by four students/ petitioners under Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (‘CrPC’) to grant anticipatory bail to the petitioner in the event of his arrest for offences under Sections 147, 148, 447, 294(b), 323, 324 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’) and Section 3(2) of Tamil Nadu Public Property (Prevention of Damage and Loss) Act, 1992, RMT. Teekaa Raman, J. granted bail to all the four students, subject to the following conditions:

  • Keep the classrooms (not less than 4 class room for each person) clean including black board, table, bench and the floor for a week.

  • Spend time in the school library and e-library to prepare notes by handwritten (not less than four pages) on (i) non-violation from excerpts of Mahatma Gandhi “(ii) educational schemes promoted by the former Chief Minister Mr.K.Kamraj and (iii) dream and vision of Dr. Abdul Kalam.

  • Such articles prepared by all the four students in the above topics have to be handed over to the School Principal. Further, directed the School Principal to host the said articles on the school website for one year.

  • The students were directed to deposit Rs.2,000/- to the school on or before 10-10-2023.

The case of the prosecution is that there was a retreat function celebrated at Montfort Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School on 06-08-2023 and there was a rivalry between the 12th standard students and 10th standard students in connection with the issue of whose song has to be played first. In the said incident, there was a push and pull. The 12th standard students trespassed into the hostel area of the 10th standard and quarreled. On 07-08-2023 all the petitioners and the other accused entered the school without getting permission and assaulted the watchman and entered the classroom while the class was going on. Students and Teachers suffered injuries and the school properties were damaged.

The Court remarked that that “on-line education” has failed, on all fronts, to inculcate “value-based education”, which is a hallmark for human evolution. Teachers and Students interface in the classroom mode, appears to be supreme over the other modes, as alternative methods of learning have failed to deliver the desired results.

The Court noted that the present case raises out of selection of song in retreat function conducted by the school, between 10th and 12th standard boys. Whether it is proper for playing such song in such function, the Court left that to the conscious of the school authority. Thus, the Court granted pre-arrest bail to all the students now studying in colleges.

[Selva Muthukumar v State, 2023 SCC OnLine Mad 6258, Order dated 29-09-2023]

Advocates who appeared in this case :

For Petitioner: Senior Counsel A. Ramesh, Advocate C. Iyyapparaj

For Respondent: Government Advocate Leonard Arul Joseph Selvam

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