Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Tuesday granted bail to Hilal Rather, son of a former finance minister, in connection with Rs 177 crore bank loan fraud case.
“Deprivation of liberty tantamount to punishment. The consequences of pre-trial detention are grave,” a bench of Justice Javed Iqbal Wani said while granting bail to Hilal Rather on furnishing of personal bond to the tune of Rs 5 lakh with two sureties of the like amount to the satisfaction of the trial court.
“Prison hell destroys the manifestation of feelings and sensibility of a person,” the court said, adding, “The petitioner has been languishing in jail for the last more than 10 months by now and he cannot be hampered from preparing for his defence which is of an essence in a criminal trial.”
The discretion for grant of bail has to be exercised on the well established propositions and principles laid down from time to time by the Apex Court, Justice Wani said. “Sentiments, strain, temper and passion do not have any role to play in exercising the discretion for grant of bail bestowed unto the courts.”
In his bail plea, Hilal contended that the trial court, while dismissing his bail application on 14 May this year, wrongly held him to be the mastermind in the alleged scam. He said the entire loan amount availed from the J&K Bank by the firm— Paradise Avenue partnership concern consisting of partners namely M/s Oracle Constructions through its partners namely Dr. Rizwan Rahim Dar, Ghulam Mohd Bhat, Daljeett Wadhera and Deepshikha Jamwal— came to be sanctioned by the bank from time to time validly as per requirement and schedule and has been utilized for the construction of the flats/ projects.