[JJ Act] Allahabad HC: Factors Such as Nature of Crime, Methodology Used Play Significant Role in Denying Bail to Juvenile

Sakina Tashrifwala

Published on: October 26, 2022 at 18:38 IST

The Allahabad High Court has stated that factors such as the nature of the crime, the methodology used, the manner of commission, and the evidence presented play a significant role in deciding whether or not to reject bail to a juvenile.

The bench of Justice Jyotsna Sharma made this observation while emphasising that bail for a juvenile is not required in all circumstances and might be denied if the Court believes that his release would defeat the goals of justice.

Section 12 of the Juvenile Justice Act

The phrase “ends of justice” appears in Section 12 of the Juvenile Justice Act [Bail to a person who looks to be a child believed to be in conflict with the law] as one of the criteria that disentitle a Juvenile to get bail.

This provision states that a juvenile shall not be released on bail if there are reasonable grounds to believe that his release would subvert the goals of justice.

For context, Section 12 of the JJ Act expressly permits the Juvenile Justice Board to examine a bail plea and release a juvenile on bail with or without surety, or to place them under the supervision of a Probation Officer or in the care of any fit person.

This provision also states that such a Juvenile shall not be released if there are reasonable grounds to believe that his

(i) Release is likely to bring the Juvenile into association with any known criminal,

(ii) Expose the said Juvenile to moral, physical, or physiological danger, or

(iii) Release would defeat the ends of justice.

“The phrase ends of justice (as found in Section 12 of the JJ Act) is undoubtedly a meaningful phrase that encompasses many factors, including the nature of the crime and the merits of the case, though ordinarily, as has been held in a number of cases, the merits of the case or the nature of the accusations are not to be considered.”

“At the same time, there may be other facts and circumstances that the court cannot simply ignore,” the Court added to the Court’s condemnation of the true intent of Section 12.


In this case, the victim’s mother filed an FIR alleging that when her 6-year-old daughter was playing outside her house, the accused juvenile, aged roughly 15 years, lured her behind a hut and raped her.

Because the accused is a minor, the case was brought before the Juvenile Justice Board, where his age was determined to be around 12 years and 10 months in an age determination investigation.

The social investigation report was called, and the District Probation Officer determined that the boy required severe control and supervision. The Juvenile Justice Board denied the juvenile bail, and the juvenile’s appeal was likewise denied.

The juvenile in question filed the current revision petition at the High Court, challenging both orders.

Order of the Court

To begin, the Court stated that in order to give meaning to the phrase “ends of justice,” the issue of bail must be viewed through a prism with three angles: First, the angle of welfare and betterment of the child itself, i.e., the best interest of the child; Second, the demands of justice to the victim and her family; and Third, the concerns of society at large.

When the Court reviewed the facts of the case against this backdrop, it discovered that a girl of the tender age of 6 years was subjected to violent sexual assault by a boy of only 15 years after she was persuaded in a well-planned manner by promising her sweets.

“The agony and shock given to an innocent girl who had no comprehension and inkling of the deed she had to go through, and the animosity generated to members of her family, can easily be comprehended,” the Court said as it dismissed the criminal revision plea.

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