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Supreme Court Ruling on Bail Conditions

28th March, 2024 Polity

Supreme Court Ruling on Bail Conditions

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  • The Supreme Court recently ruled that imposing a bail condition that prevents a person from participating in political activities violates their fundamental rights under the Constitution.

ALL ABOUT BAIL PROVISIONS IN INDIA: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/bail-provisions-in-india#:~:text=Therefore%20he%2Fshe%20shall%20not,any%20unjustified%20benefit%20to%20them.

Understanding Bail and Bail Conditions

  • Bail is a legal mechanism granting temporary release to individuals awaiting trial or appeal, typically secured by a security deposit.
  • The court's discretion in granting bail is crucial and must be exercised judiciously, as emphasized in the ‘Khilari vs. State of UP’ (2009) case.
  • Recording reasons for granting bail is a procedural requirement established by the Supreme Court to ensure transparency and accountability in the process.

Orissa High Court's Bail Condition for Siba Shankar Das

  • Siba Shankar Das, a prominent BJP leader, challenged the bail condition imposed by the Orissa High Court, which prohibited him from engaging in political activities.
  • The condition stemmed from Das's involvement in criminal cases, with the High Court citing concerns about public safety and the potential for further legal entanglements.
  • Das argued against this restriction, citing his political background and the imminent general elections, where his participation was deemed crucial.
  • The state government opposed Das's plea, highlighting his alleged involvement in new criminal cases and citing instances of threats against him, including a bomb attack on his vehicle.
  • Despite Das's arguments, the High Court upheld the bail condition, emphasizing the perceived life threat to Das and his extensive involvement in past legal matters.

Supreme Court's Verdict

  • On March 22, the Supreme Court, in a ruling by a two-judge bench, set aside the Orissa High Court's order, declaring that the restriction on political activities violated Das's fundamental rights.
  • The Court deemed the imposition of such conditions as unconstitutional and thereby nullified the bail condition placed on Das by the High Court.
  • This ruling underscore the Court's commitment to upholding individual freedoms and ensuring that bail conditions align with constitutional principles.

Precedents: Supreme Court's Intervention in Unreasonable Bail Conditions

  • The Supreme Court has a history of intervening in cases where bail conditions were deemed unreasonable or unconstitutional.
  • In November 2023, the Court lifted bail conditions imposed by the Andhra Pradesh High Court on N. Chandrababu Naidu, allowing him to participate in public rallies and meetings.
  • Similar interventions were made in cases involving bail conditions set by the Rajasthan High Court, Allahabad High Court, and Madhya Pradesh High Court, where conditions were either quashed or modified to align with legal principles and protect individual rights.
  • These rulings highlight the Supreme Court's role in safeguarding individual liberties and ensuring that bail conditions adhere to the principles of justice and fairness, as outlined in the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).


Q. Discuss the significance of bail conditions in the Indian legal system, highlighting the balance between individual liberties and societal interests. Examine recent judicial interventions in bail conditions and their implications for the administration of justice.