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Sri Arindam Nath vs State Of Karnataka on 11 June, 2018

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IN THE HIGH COURT OF KARNATAKA AT BENGALURU

DATED THIS THE 11TH DAY OF JUNE 2018

BEFORE

THE HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE JOHN MICHAEL CUNHA

CRIMINAL PETITION NO.2473 OF 2018

BETWEEN:

SRI ARINDAM NATH
S/O ASHOK KUMAR,
AGED ABOUT 29 YEARS,
R/AT NO.3, “GREENS” BUILDING,
ROOM NO.G7, II FLOOR,
20TH I CROSS, EJIPURA,
BENGALURU.
… PETITIONER

(BY SRI: S BALAKRISHNAN, ADVOCATE)

AND:

STATE OF KARNATAKA
BY VIVEKNAGAR POLICE,
REPRESENTED BY
SPECIAL PUBLIC PROSECUTOR,
HIGH COURT BUILDING,
BANGALORE-560001.
… RESPONDENT

(BY SRI:S. VISHWA MURTHY, HCGP)

THIS CRL.P IS FILED U/S.439 CR.P.C PRAYING TO
ENLARGE THE PETITIONER ON BAIL IN CRIME NO.202/2017
(S.C.NO.84/2018) OF VIVEKNAGAR POLICE STATION,
BANGALORE CITY FOR THE OFFENCE PUNISHABLE UNDER
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SECTIONS 376,384,385,354(C),392,506 OF IPC AND SECTION
66(E) AND 67 OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ACT.

THIS CRL.P COMING ON FOR ORDERS THIS DAY, THE
COURT MADE THE FOLLOWING:-

ORDER

This petition is filed under section 439 of Cr.P.C., seeking

bail in Cr.No.202/2017 registered under sections 376, 384, 506

of Indian Penal Code, 1860 and sections 66(E) and 67 of the

Information Technology Act, 2000.

2. Heard the learned counsel for the petitioner and the

learned HCGP.

3. Learned HCGP has not filed any statement of

objections, but has orally opposed the petition.

4. Investigation is completed and charge-sheet is laid

against the petitioner for the above offences. The case of the

prosecution is that the prosecutrix was a native of Orissa. She

was employed in Social DNA Labs, ITPL, Whitefield. She came to

Bengaluru in the year 2015. She developed friendship with the

petitioner. It is alleged that, by misusing the friendship, the
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petitioner committed forcible intercourse on her against her

consent. He recorded the intimate scenes and started

blackmailing the petitioner with intent to extort money. He even

threatened to upload the recorded video and uploaded the same

in the web site.

5. Learned counsel for the petitioner submits that the

offences alleged against the petitioner under sections 66(E) and

67 of Information Technology Act, 2000 are bailable. Even

though there are allegations of extortion, no material is

produced by the Investigating Agency in support of the said

accusation. In support of the allegation attracting section 376 of

Indian Penal Code is concerned, according to the prosecutrix,

she herself was in friendship with the petitioner and the alleged

offence according to her own statement had taken place since

2015. The complaint came to be lodged only on 06.09.2017.

The allegations made in the complaint, even if believed, would

go to show that she was a consenting party and therefore, even

the ingredients of section 376 of Indian Penal Code do not get

attracted to the facts of the case. Learned counsel further points

out that no material is produced to support the allegation that
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the petitioner had uploaded the intimate scenes as alleged in the

FIR and hence, he seeks enlargement of the petitioner on such

terms and conditions as found proper by this court.

6. Learned HCGP however submits that the evidence

collected by the Investigating Agency prima facie makes out the

offences alleged against the petitioner. Laptop and mobile are

seized from his possession which clinchingly establish the

ingredients of the offences under sections 66(E) and 67 of the

Information Technology Act, 2000. Delay in lodging the

complaint is satisfactorily explained by the prosecutrix. Further

he submits that the petitioner being a native of Bengal, in the

event he is enlarged on bail, he is likely to abscond and make

himself unavailable to face trial and hence, he prays for

dismissal of the petition.

7. Considered the submissions and perused the charge-

sheet papers. Even if the allegations made in the complaint are

accepted on its face value, they would indicate that the

prosecutrix developed intimacy with the petitioner in the year

2015. There are no allegations whatsoever until 2017 that at
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any point of time the alleged sexual acts between the petitioner

and the prosecutrix were objected by her. It is only in the year

2017 it is alleged that the petitioner started blackmailing the

prosecutrix with a view to extort money from her. As per the

prosecutrix, she has paid a sum of Rs.8,000/- to the petitioner in

this regard. A reading of the FIR indicates that the petitioner

and the prosecutrix are working in the same company. There is

nothing to suggest that during their long lasting relationship

there was any specific instance of extortion. In any case, the

evidence in this regard is already collected by the Investigating

Agency. As rightly pointed out by the learned HCGP, laptop and

mobile used for the commission of the above offences are

already seized and are produced before the Court. Therefore,

there cannot be any apprehension of the petitioner tampering

with the said evidence. Having regard to the nature of the

allegations made against the petitioner, in my view, the custody

of the petitioner cannot be extended solely by way of

punishment. In order to allay the apprehension expressed by

the learned HCGP, the petitioner could be put on terms to secure

his presence for the purpose of trial.

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8. Accordingly, the criminal petition is allowed.

a) Petitioner/accused is ordered to be enlarged on
bail on obtaining a bond in a sum of
Rs.1,00,000/- (Rupees One Lakh only) with two
sureties for the likesum to the satisfaction of the
jurisdictional court.

b) Petitioner shall appear before the court as and
when required.

c) Petitioner shall not threaten or allure the
prosecution witnesses in whatsoever manner.

d) Petitioner shall not get involved in similar
offences.

e) Petitioner shall not leave the jurisdiction of the
Trial Court without prior permission of the Trial
Court.

Sd/-

JUDGE

Bss

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