Once again, the Kerala High Court has postponed its verdict on the bail application of actor Dileep, who has been in judicial custody since July on charges of plotting the abduction and sexual assault of a woman actor.
The court will deliver its verdict on Wednesday. This is the fifth bail plea moved by the actor - the third in the Kerala High Court - who was arrested on July 10, and has been housed in the Aluva sub jail. He has approached Angamaly Magistrate Court twice, the last time on September 14, and on both occasions, the bail was rejected by the lower court as well. So how many times can Dileep apply for bail? And will repeated bail applications in a short span of time backfire for the actor?
Senior lawyers say that an accused can seek bail as many times as he wants. “But there should be a change in the circumstances and developments related to the case each time a fresh application is submitted,” says renowned lawyer Cherunniyoor P Sasidharan Nair. Based in Thiruvananthapuram, he was counsel of three Commissions appointed by various governments in different sensational issues.
“For example to file a fresh bail plea, a new accused should be arrested, or material of evidence should be found or some other development should have happened in the case. In Dileep’s case no such development has happened. Given the fact, I don’t think there would be any change in the court’s verdict” he adds.
Sasidharan Nair tells TNM that by moving court again and again with his bail plea, Dileep only underscores the prosecution’s argument that he is influential and therefore should be denied bail.
“It can’t be considered as a normal case given its high profile nature, and given that the accused is very rich. The court cited the chances of the accused influencing witnesses during the trial period, a point being highlighted by the prosecution, as the reason while rejecting his bail plea. The fact that he is influential hasn’t changed, which the prosecution can still raise. Also, if an accused is in judicial custody, the trial in the case won’t be delayed, whereas it will take a long time if an accused, who could influence witnesses, is released on bail,” he says.
“In case the bail is allowed, the trial may last for two-three years,” the lawyer says. In that case, the witnesses may change their stance, evidences could be destroyed, and all this is likely to affect fair judgment in the case.
The eleventh accused in the case, Dileep was arrested for allegedly plotting the crime of abducting and sexually assaulting his female colleague.
The crime occurred in a moving car near Kochi on February 17. The Angamaly Court has extended the judicial custody of Dileep till September 28 and there are only two more days to go.