SRINAGAR, May 1: The High Court today rejected suspension of the Trial Court order in infamous Board of Professional Entrance Examination (BOPEE) scam and bail application of parents and male students while it suspended the Trial Court sentence against three female students and granted them bail on compassionate grounds.
Justice Sanjeev Kumar passed the orders on bunch of petitions filed by the accused in the case and while hearing two separate petitions filed by two parents of students seeking suspension of sentence and grant of bail to them and their daughters, rejected plea of the parents and accepted those of their daughters.
Bashir Ahmad Tantray and Mushtaq Ahmad Kennu who were sentenced six years prison term and Rs 50, 000 fine by Trial Court along with other parents of students, were seeking suspension of sentence and grant of bail to them and their daughters. Court rejected the parents’ plea. However, it suspended the conviction of their daughters and granted them bail for being female students.
High Court in its order while rejecting the suspension of parents’ sentence and bail said: “Having heard learned counsel for the parties and perused the record, including the judgment impugned, I find that some debatable questions of law and fact are involved which require elaborate discussion. They have not been able to make out any good ground to suspend the sentence and grant them bail at this stage.”
Court granted bail to two accused as being females with certain riders and one was already granted bail. The Court directed the accused to furnish the bail bond of Rs 50,000 and surety bond of same amount to the satisfaction of incharge Central Jail Srinagar where the accused is presently lodged.
Suspending sentence and granting bail to daughter of Tantray, the High Court said: “However, in so far as the appellant no.2 is concerned, she is a girl of 23 years and is reportedly a student. In case she is detained it would adversely affect her career and health. She has been convicted and sentenced to under simple imprisonment for one year. From perusal of the judgment impugned, it is apparent that overzealous father i.e, appellant no.1 has dragged the appellant no.2, her daughter, in the crime for which both father and daughter have been convicted. Keeping in view the special circumstances aforesaid, I am inclined to suspend the sentence imposed upon the appellant no.2 by the trial court vide judgment impugned. This order, however, is subject to objections and till next date of hearing before the Bench. Let the matter come up for consideration on 16th May, 2018. In the meanwhile, the respondents shall file objections.”
Suspending sentence and granting bail to daughter of Kennu, the High Court said: “However, in so far as appellant no.2 is concerned, she is a girl of 21 years age and reportedly pursuing her MBBS in Acharya Shri Chander College of Medical Sciences and Hospital, Jammu. She has been convicted and sentenced to undergo simple imprisonment of one year only. From perusal of the judgment impugned, it is apparent that overzealous father i.e, appellant no.1 has dragged the appellant no.2, her daughter, in the crime for which both father and daughter have been convicted. Taking an overall view of the facts and circumstances, particularly, the fact that the appellant no.2 is a girl who is presently undergoing MBBS Course in Medical College in the State, and in case she is taken into custody, it could adversely affect her career, I am inclined to show indulgence. Accordingly, the sentence imposed on appellant no.2 vide judgment impugned is suspended. This order, however, is subject to objections and till next date of hearing before the Bench. Let the matter come up for consideration on 16th May, 2018. In the meanwhile, the respondents shall file objections”.
High Court deferred the hearing of bail applications filed by 20 accused male students and asked the Counsel representing the accused to make sure that the accused must be available on hearing of the case.
Court, meantime, granted time to State counsel for filing of objections to these bail applications. State counsel has vehemently opposed to grant bail to the accused and submitted that they are involved in such a crime which has shaken whole society. Court during the course of proceedings also observed that these persons are paying price for their over-zealousness.
It may be mentioned that 43 persons including former chairman of BOPEE Mushtaq Peer were held guilty by the trial court in the CET-2012 paper scam and were awarded sentences and fine as per the involvement in the crime.
Accused persons in their bail application submitted that conviction and sentence awarded by the trial court on April 25 is perverse on its face and has resulted into travesty of justice, the law and justice. They demanded both conviction and sentence awarded by the trial court be suspended and they be admitted to bail till their fate about the involvement in the scam is decided by the High Court.
It is also submitted that the conviction and sentence awarded by the trial court deserves to be tested on the fact established during the course of investigation by the VoK as well as the Crime Branch conducted in the year 2012 and the complaints lodged were on enquiry found to be false.
All accused persons finally sought conviction and sentence and the fine imposed on them be set aside and they be exonerated from all the charges framed against them.
HC rejects suspension of trial court order; bail to parents, male students in BOPEE scam