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Supreme Court on Bilkis Bano’s Case

Why is it in the news?

  • The Supreme Court has nullified the remission granted by the Gujarat government to 11 convicts in the Bilkis Bano case.
  • The court held that Gujarat was not the appropriate authority to decide on the remission petition since the trial took place in Consequently, the remission orders were declared invalid.
About Remission

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 Remission refers to the reduction in the period of a sentence without altering the nature of the sentence.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 It allows the state to release convicts early under its remission policy.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 Article 72 empowers the President of India to grant pardons, suspend, remit, reprieves, respites, or commute the sentence of a person convicted for specific offenses. This power applies to offenses tried by a court martial, offenses against laws under the executive power of the Union, and sentences of death.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 Article 161 confers similar powers on the Governor, limited to matters under the executive power of the state.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 Section 432 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) 1973 grants the government the power to suspend or remit sentences.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 Section 433A mandates remission only after 14 years of imprisonment.

Supreme Court Verdicts on Remission

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 In the case of Laxman Naskar versus Union of India (2000), the Supreme Court laid down five grounds for considering remission.

1) The impact of the offense on society.

2) The probability of the crime being repeated.

3) The potential of the convict to commit crimes in the future.

4) Whether any purpose is being served by keeping the convict in prison.

5) The socio-economic condition of the convict’s family.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 State of Haryana vs. Rajkumar (2021):

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 The Supreme Court clarified that Section 433-A of CrPC does not affect the constitutional powers conferred on the President/Governor under Articles 72/161.

路聽聽聽聽聽聽 This reinforces the distinct constitutional authority of the President and Governor in matters of remission.

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