Expressing displeasure to the procedure adopted by the High Court, the apex court Bench observed that:
“When an application for anticipatory bail was listed before the learned single-judge, which was also accompanied by an application for ad-interim relief, the learned Judge should have decided the same one way or the other, so far as the ad-interim prayer or should have taken up for consideration after giving some reasonable time to the State. Even if admitted, the learned Judge should have listed the same for final disposal on a specific date, keeping in view the nature of relief sought in the matter.”
The Bench said that the High Court not giving any specific date of listing, particularly in a matter relating to anticipatory bail, is not a procedure which can be countenanced.
The Supreme Court, therefore, asked the High Court to dispose of the anticipatory bail application expeditiously and preferably within a period of two weeks.
“If the main application cannot be disposed of for any reason, the I.A. for interim relief be considered on its own merits. Till such time, we grant interim protection from arrest to the petitioner herein,” the top court noted in its order.