STATE TIMES NEWSJAMMU: The Division Bench of the High Court comprising Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Sindhu Sharma, while hearing public interest litigation pertaining to spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Monday issued a series of directions to Government and its departments. The proceedings in the matter were conducted through video conferencing and video calls. Both the Judges heard the matter from their respective residences in Jammu.
Jammu Courts hear cases via WhatsApp video call; grant bails, remands
JAMMU: The courts in Jammu District are hearing cases through WhatsApp video call and have granted bails, remands and conducted other works as a measure to avoid assembly of people and prevent spread of coronavirus infection.Special Judge NIA/POTA/TADA Court Subash C Gupta granted 15 days judicial remand of Shakir Bashir, Peer Tariq Ahmed, lnsha Jan, Mohammad Abass and Waiz ul Islam who were arrested by the NIA in Pulwama attack case in which 40 CRPF jawans were martyred.Meanwhile, Court also granted default bails of Mashood Ahmed, Mohammad Jaffer, Liyaqat Ali and Kousar Hussain who were allegedly involved in Kishtwar terrorism case as police failed to produce Challan in time.Special Court after hearing Advocates A.K Sawhney and Vikar Hussain Salaria observed that on conjoint reading of Section 167 of Code of Criminal Procedure and Section 43 of UA (P) Act, a legal conclusion can safely be drawn that on expiry of total period of detention of an accused for 180 days, on remand, he shall be released on bail, in eventuality of failure of the investigating agency to produce the Chargesheet in the court of law.“Admittedly, in the present case, the concerned police has remained unsuccessful to present the Chargesheet within the afore-referred period of 180 days before the competent court of law for want of sanction for prosecution by the Government. Accused cannot be remanded beyond the period of 180 days, which is going to expire today. In view of the matter, this Court has no other alternative than to release the accused. Accordingly, Superintendent of the concerned jail is directed to release them, on furnishing of personal and bail bond to the tune of Rs. 1 lakh, by each of them. In case of default, the defaulter (s) shall continue in custody till further orders. The accused shall comply with the following terms and conditions, while on bail, as granted that they shall co-operate with the investigating officer for further investigation of the case. They shall not tamper with the prosecution evidence or otherwise hamper the investigation, in any manner,” the court observed.
On being apprised by Amicus Curiae that about 400 pilgrims from Bihar stranded at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine, Katra are being asked to vacate their current lodgings, the Division Bench directed Chief Executive Officer, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board and the Deputy Commissioner, Reasi to ensure that these pilgrims are not asked to vacate their current lodgings and their needs are fully provided till such time as the lockdown persists. Directions were also issued to Secretary, Department of Health and Medical Education of both the Union Territories together with the IGP, Jammu, IGP, Kashmir and IGP, Ladakh to ensure that complete safety and security is provided to the personnel who are serving at all government facilities. Both UT governments were also directed to ensure that the accommodation, healthcare and the needs of the migrant labourers, if not already provided for, are addressed. Taking into account the fact that despite nationwide lockdown, a large number of people are resorting to their usual strolls, loitering and morning walks in local parks etc., the Division Bench directed the law enforcing authorities and park owning authorities (all municipal corporations, development authorities) to prevent access to public parks, etc which are normally used for such purposes by the citizens. The Ministry of External Affairs was also directed to look into the aspect of the evacuation of persons who are stranded and need to be evacuated to India on priority. The Home Secretary of Jammu and Kashmir was directed to file an interim report regarding the functioning of the High Powered Committee constituted for the examination of the prisoners required to be released from prisons. The Division Bench directed Mission Director ICPS to scrutinise the estimates of Rs 33.64 lakhs for provision of the lease line connections to 24 locations of Juvenile Justice Boards and Observation Homes submitted by the BSNL at an earliest. The Court was apprised that back up facilities in the nature of inverters etc. in the JJBs have been provided so that video conferencing on available apparatus can be conducted. The Division Bench appreciated the manner in which the authorities in the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir, as well as Ladakh, are addressing the current crisis.
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