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HomeEditorialBilkis Bano Case, Supreme Court Criticizes Remission Grant

Bilkis Bano Case, Supreme Court Criticizes Remission Grant

Misuse of Supreme Court Order

On January 8, the Supreme Court labeled the release of 11 convicts in the Bilkis Bano case a misuse. The case stems from a May 2022 decision allowing Gujarat to review Radheshyam Shah’s early release plea. This led to the premature release of 10 other convicts by Gujarat on August 10, 2022.

Concealment of Critical Facts

The bench, comprising Justices B.V. Nagarathna and Ujjal Bhuyan, noted that the court was misled into making its May 2022 ruling. The respondents failed to disclose crucial information, which would have likely led the court to a different conclusion. The judgment highlighted that the Gujarat High Court had directed Shah in 2019 to approach the Maharashtra government for remission. His subsequent plea was opposed by the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Special CBI Court in Mumbai. Even local authorities, including the Superintendent of Police in Dahod, warned against releasing the convict, fearing potential harm to Ms. Bano and her family.

Misrepresentation and State Complicity

Justice Nagarathna pointed out that Shah had suppressed these facts in the Supreme Court in 2022. Additionally, the judgment criticized Shah for misrepresenting a supposed disagreement between the Bombay and Gujarat High Courts. An unchallenged Gujarat High Court order from March 2020, which denied remission to Shah and instructed him to approach the Maharashtra government, was still effective.

Furthermore, the judge highlighted the Gujarat government’s peculiar shift in stance. Initially, the state had agreed in the Supreme Court that Maharashtra was the right authority to decide on remission. However, it inexplicably reversed its position and did not seek a review of the May 2022 decision, suggesting a collusion with the respondent’s request.

Conclusion: Directives to Convicts

The latest verdict mandates the released convicts to surrender to jail authorities within two weeks. It also emphasizes the Supreme Court’s decision to transfer the case’s investigation to the CBI and the trial to the Special Court in Mumbai, given the conduct of the Gujarat government.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. The Supreme Court’s critique of remission in the Bilkis Bano case is a crucial stance against injustice. The comment underscores the need for a balanced approach, emphasizing that leniency should not compromise the pursuit of justice for victims of heinous crimes. The judiciary’s commitment to accountability is commendable.

  2. The blog on the Bilkis Bano Case is commendable! It succinctly captures the Supreme Court’s critique of the remission grant. Insightful and well-written! 👏👍

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