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JJB dismisses bail plea of juvenile accused in Srinagar acid attack case

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Srinagar: The Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) today rejected the bail application of a 17 plus aged person allegedly involved in throwing acid on a woman in Hawal neighborhood of the city in January this year.

The ‘accused’, whose name could not be divulged because of certain protections guaranteed under law, had approached the Board seeking bail for being child in conflict with Law (CICL).

The Police Station Nowhatta, Srinagar, which had taken cognizance of the crime against the victim, had detained the ‘accused’ under Section 326 A IPC (punishment for acid attacks) read with 120-B IPC (party to a criminal conspiracy to commit an offence punishable with death, imprisonment for life or rigorous imprisonment).

The Board comprising Touseef Ahmad Magray, Principal Magistrate, and Dr. Khair Ul Nisa and Dr. Asima Hassan, members, rejected the bail application of the ‘accused’ saying “the release at this juncture of CICL on bail will not serve the ends of justice”.

The Board observed “in the instant case alleged act of Applicant/CICL wherein he accompanied the main accused to commit the alleged crime and post occurrence behaviour of Applicant/CICL, all point out to the fact that he needs reformation of highest degree so as to make him understand that the norms of society and laws of land are to be adhered to”.

It further held that the release of the ‘accused’ at this juncture of CICL on bail will not serve the ends of justice.

“Rather, his placement at Observation Home, Harwan, Srinagar is in his best interest at this juncture as he has shown signs of reformation which shall continue for the time being”, it said.

“Taking into the considerations the nature and gravity of allegations and overall circumstances, Board is of the opinion that release at this stage of CICL on bail would certainly defeat the Ends of Justice. Accordingly the instant bail application is dismissed and shall be attached with Final Report of the instant case”, it said.

The Date of Birth certificate issued by the Srinagar Municipal Corporation indicates that the bail applicant ‘accused’ was born on 20th  of October 2004.

On 2nd of February 2022 he was arrested by the personnel of the Nowhatta Police Station and since then is lodged in the Observation Home, Harwan, Srinagar.

The Principle of presumption of innocence is recognized as a “fundamental principle” by the J.J Act, 2015 and accordingly it shall be presumed that the Juvenile is innocent of any malafide or criminal intent his lawyer Mir Tashveeq pleaded before the JJB.

Therefore, the Applicant/CICL has a right to be treated in accordance with this presumption, he added.

The official attorney Zaffar Iqbal Shaheen objected to the application saying the ‘accused’ is involved in the commission of a  heinous offence.

“Having committed and actively aided in the commission of this horrendous act shows depravity of mind and cannot be treated as an act which can be dubbed as a child’s mistake during youth-hood”, he said.

“It is a ghastly act done with passion to ravage the life of the victim. The Applicant/CICL if released would certainly expose him to moral, physical or psychological danger”, he said.

The JJB also studied the report of the Legal Cum Probationary Officer (LCPO) Srinagar. It read that the main culprit Sajid and the ‘accused’ were known to each other. On the day of commission of offence the main culprit asked CICL to accompany him for committing the said grave offence.

The report reveals that the below 18 aged ‘accused’ lived in a nuclear family system. Peer group influence, parental neglect and lack of moral and social education are the basic reasons for delinquency.

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