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No more long dates in bail matters; two benches will hear bail petitions Gujarat High Court

Chief Justice Sunita Agarwal of the Gujarat High Court has announced significant changes in the handling of bail matters. The court has decided to eliminate the practice of granting long adjournments in bail cases, a move aimed at expediting the legal process. Chief Justice Agarwal revealed that two benches will be dedicated to hearing bail matters starting from October 5, with the goal of streamlining the proceedings within a month.

Addressing Supreme Court Criticism

The decision comes after the Supreme Court criticized the Gujarat High Court last year for granting extended adjournments in bail cases, causing delays in justice delivery. Notably, the bail application filed by activist Teesta Setalvad had faced a six-week adjournment, drawing attention to the issue.

Ending ‘Rule Nisi’ Practice

Chief Justice Agarwal has also expressed her intention to eliminate the practice of judges issuing ‘rule nisi’ and adjourning bail applications for extended periods. This move is aimed at ensuring a more efficient and expedited process for individuals seeking bail.

Need for Cooperation

Justice Agarwal emphasized the need for cooperation from lawyers and the Public Prosecutor’s office in implementing these changes. While acknowledging the challenges, she assured that steps were being taken to streamline the bail process and reduce delays. However, she also noted that the appointment of additional judges is a separate process that will take time.

While some lawyers expressed concerns about the capacity of the two dedicated benches to handle the caseload, Justice Agarwal explained that the appointment of more judges is a part of the plan for improvement. The Gujarat High Court is committed to addressing these issues and expediting bail hearings for the benefit of those seeking justice.


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