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The High Court Rejected Gauri Lankesh’s Default Bail Request

The plea that an accused person in the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh submitted to the Karnataka High Court seeking “default bail” by contesting an order from a lower court was denied by the higher court. Hrishikesh Devdikar, a resident of Maharashtra, was taken into judicial custody in January 2020 after being apprehended in connection with the investigation.

Why The High Court Denied Gauri Lankesh’s Request For Default Bail?

After some time had passed, he approached the special court with an application for statutory/default bail’ in accordance with Section 167(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code. Despite this, the court did not take his application into consideration. As a result, he filed a complaint with the High Court on this.

The accused maintained that a charge sheet was required to be submitted within the first three months after his detention because it involved a murder investigation. However, even as late as April 4, 2020, no charge sheet was ever submitted against him; hence, he ought to be granted bail in accordance with the second subsection of Section 167 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

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The lawyer for the government contended that Devdikar had vanished without a trace and that a charge sheet had already been submitted in his absence. The charge sheet in the case had already been submitted before this accused was arrested, hence Justice Suraj Govindaraj did not accept the defendant’s plea on October 21. He stated this as the reason for his decision. As a result, he is unable to take use of the provisions of subsection (2) of section 167 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

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