Arnab Goswami’s interim bail in abetment-to-suicide case will continue till Bombay HC disposes his plea: SC

His interim bail will be operative for another 4 weeks from day HC decides his plea in case: SC
Arnab Goswami

New Delhi, November 27

Sixteen days after ordering release of Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami, the Supreme Court on Friday delivered a detailed judgement which said the FIR against him prima facie didn’t establish abetment to suicide charge.

A Bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud went to the extent of questioning the FIR against Goswami.

It said prima facie evaluation of FIR about alleged non-payment of dues driving the businessman to commit suicide prima facie didn’t establish a charge of abetment to suicide against Goswami.

It criticised the Bombay High Court for failing to protect Goswami’s fundamental rights.

The Bench – which also included Justice Indu Malhotra and Justice Indira Banerjee – said courts must ensure that state didn’t use criminal law as a tool to harass citizens and jeopardise their liberties.

It said the Bombay High Court failed to take a prima facie view of the FIR and the nature of accusation against Goswami and erred in denying him bail.

The Bombay High Court abdicated its duty in protecting the liberties of a citizen (Goswami) allegedly targeted by the Maharashtra government he had been critical of.

The top court ordered that the interim bail granted to Goswami and two other accused – Feroz Mohammad Shaikh and Neetish Sarda -on November 11 would remain operational until the Bombay High Court disposed of their plea for quashing of the FIR.

The interim bail will remain in force for four weeks after the high court’s order and if the high court rejects their plea, they can move the top court.

The Supreme Court had on November 11 granted interim bail to Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami in an abetment to suicide case, saying it would be a travesty of justice if personal liberty of a person was curtailed like this.

“We are of the considered view that the High Court was in error in rejecting the application for the grant of interim bail, it had said.

In its interim order, the top court had ordered the Maharashtra authorities to release the journalist forthwith.

If state governments target individuals, they must realise that there is the Supreme Court to protect the liberty of citizens, it had noted.

A reasoned verdict would be delivered later, it had said on November 11.

Expressing serious concern over state governments targeting some individuals on the basis of ideology and difference of opinion, the top court had said they must realise that there is the Supreme Court to protect the liberty of citizens.

Goswami and the two other accused had challenged the Bombay High Court’s November 9 order denying them interim bail in connection with the 2018 alleged abetment to suicide of an interior designer and had asked them to approach the sessions court.

Related Posts