It is imperative on the High Court to record reasons while deciding application under Section 378(3) CrPC—Reiterated: SC

Supreme Court: A.M. Sapre, J. speaking for himself and Uday U. Lalit, J. allowed an appeal filed by the State of U.P. against the judgment of a Division Bench of the Allahabad High Court whereby the  appellant’s application under Section 378(3) CrPC was rejected and the judgment of Additional Sessions Judge acquitting the accused (respondents herein) was affirmed.

The respondents were prosecuted and tried for commission of offences punishable under Sections 363, 366, 376 and 120-B IPC. The Additional Sessions Judge, on appreciating the evidence adduced by the prosecution, acquitted the respondents of all the charges. Aggrieved by the acquittal, the appellant filed an application for leave to appeal under Section 378(3) before the High Court which was rejected vide the order impugned. Against this order of the High Court, the appellant preferred the instant appeal.

The Supreme Court referred to State of Maharashtra v. Sujay Mangesh Poyarekar (2008) 9 SCC 475 for looking at the parameters to be kept in mind by the High Court while deciding an application for leave to appeal. The Court perused the order impugned and felt constrained to observe that the High Court grossly erred in passing the same without assigning any reason. It was a clear case of non-application of mind, held the Supreme Court. The order impugned neither sets out the facts nor the submissions of the parties nor the findings nor the reasons as to why the leave to appeal was declined. In such circumstances, the order impugned was set aside and the matter was remanded back to the High Court for deciding the application afresh. The appeal was, thus, allowed. [State of U.P. v. Anil Kumar,2018 SCC OnLine SC 1223, dated 29-08-2018]

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