The Bombay High Court on Monday ordered the release on bail of Chanda and Deepak Kochhar in a loan fraud case “Individual liberty is an important component of our constitutional mandate. Simply because an arrest is legal does not mean that it must be made…if arrests are made on a regular basis, it can inflict irreparable harm to a person’s reputation and self-esteem “.

Notably, the HC stated that a trial court must be established “first ensure that the arrest is valid… If the arrest does not meet the conditions of Section 41 of the CrPC, the court is obligated not to authorise further custody of the accused “.

It added: “The special judge has overlooked the mandate of law and the dicta laid down by the SC.”

The HC granted the Kochhar pair relief on a personal bond and surety of Rs 1 lakh apiece, but granted their request for two weeks on cash bail. They must provide the surety within two weeks. On January 15, their only son will marry.

The HC said the practise of presenting reasons for arrest is to “ensure that officers do not arrest the accused unnecessarily and justices don’t allow detention casually and mechanically”.

It was noticed that the CBI had said in Chanda’s “grounds of arrest” that “the accused is a FIR-named. She has not been cooperating or disclosing the true and complete facts of the case.” “Failure to disclose genuine and correct facts cannot be a cause,” the court ruled.

The next hearing of the Kochhars’ quashing petition will be on February 6.

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