ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court said for seeking the concession of bail, the accused person has to show that the evidence collected against him during the investigation gives rise to clear-headed suspicions regarding his involvement.
The judgment authored by Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar stated that while deciding bail applications, it is the elementary duty of the courts to apply a judicious mind tentatively to reach a just and proper conclusion on whether reasonable grounds are made out to enlarge the accused on bail.
It maintained that the axiom “reasonable grounds” connotes and associates those grounds that are legally acceptable and based on reasons that attract the judicial mind, as opposed to being imaginative, fallacious and/ or presumptuous.
The judgment noted that in the instant matter, the possibility of mala fide intention in lodging the FIR cannot be ruled out, and, at this stage, there are no reasonable grounds for believing that the accused are involved; rather, there are sufficient grounds for further inquiry to prove the guilt of the accused persons.
According to the FIR, the mother of Iqra Bibi (the victim), reported to the police that accused Salman Mushtaq (petitioner) abducted her daughter (Iqra Bibi) along with two unknown persons for committing rape. Ahmar Ali (another petitioner), the real brother of the abductee, was not nominated in the FIR but was implicated on the basis of the statement of the alleged abductee recorded under Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898.
The petitioners’ counsel argued that the lower courts, while rejecting the bail applications of his clients, failed to consider that the alleged abductee is sui juris and had contracted a marriage with the petitioner Salman Mushtaq on 05.04.2023 of her own volition, and without any coercion. He further argued that Ahmar Ali was present and also witnessed the nikkah.
It was further averred that the FIR was lodged with mala fide intention to blackmail the petitioners and extort money from them.
It was further contended that the Courts below failed to consider the fact that there was no medical report/ certificate of the alleged victim; on the contrary, the petitioner, Salman Mushtaq had filed a suit for restitution of conjugal rights against the alleged abductee before the Family Court and, vide judgment and decree dated 19.07.2023, his suit was decreed, whereas, Iqra Bibi has also filed a suit for jactitation of marriage which is pending adjudication.
The Court said considering that the offence of rape was suspected and reported to the police, the medical examination should have been conducted immediately and without any delay in order to draw DNA samples.
Justice Mazhar wrote that in the Supreme Court judgment in Salman Akram Raja and another vs. Government of Punjab, it was inter alia directed that in rape cases, the administration of DNA tests and preservation of DNA evidence should be made mandatory.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023