SC says every case different when Arnab Goswami bail example cited during hearing
The Supreme Court on Wednesday said “every case is different” when the example of bail for Republic TV managing director Arnab Goswami was cited during a hearing into an application related to incarcerated journalist Siddique Kappan.
Chief Justice of India S.A. Bobde asked senior lawyer Kapil Sibal, representing the Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) that had filed the plea on Kappan: “Are you willing to go to the court (trial court) below?”
Sibal said: “In Arnab Goswami’s case, Your Lordships have interfered when the bail application was pending. I will rely on that.”
“Every case is different,” the bench said. “You show us any precedent where an association had moved the court seeking relief.”
Goswami was in custody for eight days in a suicide abetment case before he was granted bail by the top court while Kappan has been in jail for the past 58 days.
Kappan was picked up on his way to Hathras, Uttar Pradesh, where a Dalit girl had been brutalised and murdered. He was accused of trying to disturb peace and charged under the stringent UAPA.
Solicitor-general Tushar Mehta, representing the Uttar Pradesh government, told the bench, which included Justices A.S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian, that the KUWJ was a third party in the case.
Sibal submitted: “The FIR itself is false. He is arrested on the basis of false allegations…. There are judgments which say the court should consider the allegations in the FIR while considering release on bail.”
The Chief Justice noted that it was not the accused or any of his family members who had gone to court.
Sibal then said: “I can implead the wife and the daughter of the accused.”
Following this, the court adjourned the matter for a week to enable Kappan’s wife or daughter to file a fresh application for his release. Kappan’s family lives in Kerala.