In a recent matter of LAKHAN PRALHAD MISAL vs. THE STATE OF MAHARASHTRA (Application/2065/2023 IN BA/913/2023), a single Judge Bench of Justice S.G. Mehare of the Hon’ble High Court of Bombay Bench at Aurangabad rejected the Bail Application (Crime no. 0315/2020) of the Applicant on merits.
The Hon’ble High Court observed both Counsels for the Applicant and Eyewitness were misleading the Court which was tantamount to misconduct.
i) The Applicant filed a Bail Application in Crime no 0315/2020, which was a Complaint registered against the Applicant with Police Station Satara, Aurangabad for the offence punishable under Section 307 (Attempt to Murder) and Section 299 (Culpable Homicide) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
ii) Counsel for the Applicant, Mr. S.G. Shinde, sought time for seeking instructions which was granted by the Court on 14-06-2023. On 22-06-2023, at the time of the hearing neither the Complainant or Injured was present nor did they file any affidavit regarding their stand. Instead the affidavit that was filed was that of the Eyewitness who claimed that she did not have any objection to the Applicant being granted bail.
iii) The Court upon making an inquiry learned that the Eyewitness was having a live-in relationship with the Applicant who is seeking bail. The Court held that the Counsel for the Applicant was making a misleading attempt to secure bail for the Accused Applicant. The Court did not appreciate that the Counsels of the Applicant and the Eyewitness who were working together were jointly misleading the Court to please the client. It appears that the injured was also kept in the dark. Though the learned counsel for the Applicant explained that it was his inadvertent mistake, the Court held that the facts do not support believing him.
Being upset with the conduct of both the Counsels in the present Bail matter the Hon’ble High Court while rejecting the bail made the following observations.
1) The Counsels tried to deceive the Court by practicing unlawful means to assure the bail for the Applicant. Further, observed that the Eyewitness and the Applicant were together in a relationship and the Applicant deliberately sent her to swear in the affidavit. The Complainant has no idea what is going on. Moreover, both the Counsels practiced together and they know each other very well.
2) It is very disgraceful that the tactics used by the Counsels to gratify their client in such a way degrades the dignity of a noble profession. Though the mistake was accepted by the Counsel of the Applicant that was not convincing. There is no doubt that the affidavit of the witness was deliberately filed.
3) Consequently, both the Counsels were directed to appear before the Disciplinary Committee of the Bar Council of Maharastra and Goa. Such practice is denounced and to maintain the discipline the matter is referred to the Bar Council of Maharastra and Goa for the necessary action against the lawyers for misconduct and misleading the Court.
4) Subsequently on the unconditional apology of both the Counsel in writing, and after taking into consideration the future of the Junior lawyer, the Hon’ble Court called back the earlier order directing an investigation and inquiry by the Bar Council of Maharastra and Goa.
The Hon’ble High Court rejected the Bail Application on merits and stated that the conduct of the Applicant is in itself sufficient to reject the Bail Application.
The Indian Lawyer