At, High Court of Karnataka
By, FOR THE PETITIONER: M. ARUNA SHYAM
By, ADVOCATE. FOR THE RESPONDENT: MAHESH SHETTY
For the Petitioner: M. Aruna Shyam, Advocate. For the Respondent: Mahesh Shetty, HCGP.
(Prayer: This Criminal Petition is filed Under Section 438 of Cr.P.C. praying this Court to enlarge the petitioner on bail in the event of his arrest in Cr.No.118/2020 of K.R. Pet Town Police Station, Mandya for the offence punishable Under Section 353 of I.P.C.)
Through Video Conference:
1. This petition is filed under Section 438 of Cr.P.C seeking anticipatory bail of the petitioner/accused in Crime No.118/2020 for the offence punishable under Section 353 of IPC.
2. The factual matrix of the case is that on 05.05.2020 at around 7.30 p.m., the complainant, who is a Probationer Police Sub-Inspector was assigned with a duty related to COVID-19 in the K.R.Pet Town, accordingly, the Police Sub-Inspector with her fellow colleagues was creating awareness related to COVID-19 Pandemic to the people. It is alleged that, at that point in time, a car came from the side of T.B. Circle and the same was stopped by one Nagaraju, colleague of complainant and upon enquiring about the petitioner's movement by the complainant and her colleagues, it is alleged that there has been some tussle and exchange of words between them and the petitioner has threatened her and obstructed them in discharging their official duty.
3. Learned counsel appearing for the petitioner in his argument would contend that the petitioner is a socially active person and he was creating awareness about global Novel Pandemic COVID-19 and also involved in distribution of face mask, medicine and grocery kits to the needy people with the permission from the concerned authority. The offence alleged against the petitioner is not punishable with either death or imprisonment for life and the maximum punishment is up to two years with fine. The petitioner is ready to abide by any condition that may be imposed by this Court.
4. Learned High Court Government Pleader appearing for the respondent-State would contend that the petitioner has caused obstruction in discharge public duty by the complainant and her colleagues and hence, the petitioner is not entitled for anticipatory bail.
5. Having heard the arguments of learned counsel appearing for the petitioner and learned Government Advocate for the respondent-State, this Court has to examine whether the petitioner has made out the grounds to invoke Section 438 of Cr.P.C.
6. Having considered the contents of the complaint, it is evident that an allegation is made against the petitioner that he caused obstruction in discharge of public duty by the complainant and violated the order of the Deputy Commissioner uttering that he is the Mandya District BJP President and abused in a filthy language stating that still she is a probationer.
7. Having taken note of the fact that the incident has taken place during Pandemic COVID-19 and also considering the nature and gravity of the offence, the same is not punishable with either death or imprisonment for life. However, this Court can safeguard the interest of the prosecution by imposing certain stringent conditions against the petitioner by invoking Section 438 of Cr.P.C.
8. Accordingly, I pass the following:
The petition is allowed. Consequently, the petitioner/accused shall be released on bail in the event of his arrest in connection with Crime No.118/2020 of K.R. Pet Town Police Station, subject to the following conditions:-
i) The petitioner shall surrender himself before the Investigating Officer within Ten days from the date of receipt of a certified copy of this order and shall execute a personal bond for a sum of Rs.50,000/- (Rupees Fifty Thousand Only) with two sureties for the like-sum to the satisfaction of the concerned Investigating Officer.
ii) The petitioner shall not indulge in hampering the investigation or tampering the prosecution witnesses.
iii) The petitioner shall co-operate with the Investigating Officer to complete the investigation, and he shall appear before the Investigating Officer as and when called for.
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iv) The petitioner shall not leave the jurisdiction of the Investigating Officer without prior permission, till the charge sheet is filed or for a period of three months whichever is earlier. v) The petitioner shall mark his attendance once in a month i.e., on 30th of every month between 10.00 am and 5.00 pm., before the Investigating Officer for a period of three months or till the charge sheet is filed, whichever is earlier.