..::Bail Law in Pakistan should be reformed

BAIL LAW SHOULD BE REFORMED: British’s Government had made Indian Penal Code in 1860, which describe offences, and their punishment. And thereafter, British’s Government had also made Criminal Procedure Code (Cr.P.C.) in 1898, which provides procedure for trial of criminal cases in Courts. Both laws were adopted by the Pakistan‘s Government after its independence.

It is interesting thing that aforesaid both laws were made by British imperialism for controlling and ruling on India according to their desire. But after independence no effort has been made to reform laws according to welfare Pakistan’s people.

And aforesaid both laws are for over century an old, and they must be reformed according to present requirements of Pakistan’s society and for welfare of people.

Although, the Second schedule has been given in Cr.P.C. which shows detail description offences. And some offences are bail-able and some are non bail-able. But discretionary power to grant bail in non bail offences to the Courts under section 497 Cr.P.C.

I think, bail should be granted as matter of right to accused in all offences except a few offences like terrorism, murder, rape, dacoity etc. on the following reasons:

Meaning of bail:

According to Black’s Law Dictionary “A security such as cash or a bond; especially, security required by a Court for release of a prisoner who must appear at a future time”.

(i)         Most jails are in Pakistan was built by British Government, which have very low capacity to hold prisoners.

(ii)        At the beginning of new English judicial System, jails and Courts were only built at district headquarter. But now criminal Courts are working at district headquarters as well as tehsil headquarters. And in most cases tehsil headquarters are away at district headquarters for more than 50 kilometers, and prisoners daily in severe cold winter and hot summer send via prisoner’s van to criminal Courts situated at tehsil headquarters.

(iii)       In every jail has a cell, which has prepared list of those prisoners who’s required by the criminal Courts in trials, and has prepared list that’s send by the criminal Court back to in jail.

(iv)       Today, Surety bond is very low amount order by learned Court, but surety bond must be increased, and continue increase according to inflation.

(v)        If any person already on bail and he repeat offence or offences, he will not grant bail in bail-able offence until decision of his case.

(vi)       Per-arrest bail should be granted as a matter of right to accused in bail-able offences subject to joining police’s investigation to protect innocent people from police torture and humiliation. And criteria has been given in act while granting pre-arrest bail to accused such as education, social status, job, allegation, and against evidence on file. Two reasonable surety bonds should be made in pre- arrest bail.

(vii)      A huge annual expense has been spent on transportation for prisoners from jails to criminal Courts situated at tehsil headquarters, such as maintenance of prisoner’s van, security, and petrol.

(viii)     While holding prisoners in jails, a huge annual expense has been spent of food, medical, and security by the state. Now Pakistani jails have been producing habitual and hardening criminals, but I think jail should be made reform center.

(ix)       When any prisoner keeps in jail, he does not work, and he and his family suffer due to economic problems due to his detention in jail.

(x)        It is no benefit to society to keep accused in jail without completing trial, because every accused is/are innocent during trial process unless he proves guilty. But I think, habitual criminal must be kept in jail, who break law and disturbed society.

(xi)       Surety bond must be increased to extent that accused does not escape or escape to foreign country. But today surety bond is very low amount which is invitation to accused to escape or to escape foreign country after granting bail.

Pakistan’s State runs on taxes, which it collects from people. And all expenses has been spent by the State to keep accused in jail, such as food, medical, transportation and security, on burden of their citizens. Common people are suffering due to indirect heavy taxes, and reform must be made in all departments for reducing the State expenses for welfare of Pakistan’s people.

By: AZMAT ULLAH WARRAICH

Advocate High Court