Stressing that bail is a matter of right and cannot be denied, except in accordance with law, the Bombay high court (HC) has ruled that any interim relief granted by a court can be vacated only by the court itself and there is “no scope for interpretation” of its orders by the police.
The observations came while hearing a plea filed by a Pune resident. The man, an accused in a forgery case, was granted pre-arrest bail by the HC, despite which, the police took him into custody for interrogation. According to his plea, following HC’s directions, the man reported to the police station in Hadapsar twice a week for questioning. But he said the police did not maintain any records and instead, a police inspector (PI) monitoring the probe took him into custody.
Justice Sadhna Jadhav, however, took a strict stand against this. She ruled that the PI had defied the court order. “There was no occasion for the police to take custody of the applicant without the court’s prior or without substantiating that he had not complied with its orders,” she said.
“The right to liberty of an individual is his fundamental, valuable right which cannot be taken away, except in accordance with law, or in the larger public interest,” justice Jadhav said. She also ordered the ACP concerned to hold an inquiry into the matter and submit an affidavit.