SC sets aside furlough order of Guj HC against convict Narayan Sai in 2014 rape case


New Delhi, Oct 20 (UNI) Supreme Court on Wednesday in its judgment set aside the grant of two weeks' furlough granted to self-proclaimed godman and convict Asaram's son, Narayan Sai, who is serving life term in a 2014 rape case.

The bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Justice Dr Dhananjaya Yashwant Chandrachud pronounced the verdict, after hearing the state of Gujarat's SLP (Special Leave Petition) against the order of the Single Judge of the Gujarat High Court granting the convict, Narayan Sai, furlough for a period of 2 weeks.

The bench held that the furlough can be granted after a stipulated number of years have been served, without any reason.

It was observed that "the purpose for the same is to allow the prisoner to continue with family life and integration in the society. However, the bench added that while furlough can be claimed without a reason, a prisoner does not have an absolute legal right to furlough, that the interest of the prisoner in the grant of furlough has to be balanced against the public interest and furlough can be refused to certain categories of prisoners."

While setting aside the Gujarat High Court order, the bench noted that the concerned jail superintendent has given a negative opinion about the respondent based on the fact that he kept a mobile phone in the jail illegally and tried to make contact with the outside world. The bench noted that there have been instances of threats issued to the investigating team and witnesses at the behest of the respondent, that during the trial, attempts were made to bribe public officials, and that the conduct of the respondent in the jail is also not beyond reproach.

"Disturbance to public peace and tranquility are the grounds in the Bombay Furlough and Parole Rules, 1959 for the refusal of furlough. In view of these circumstances, we allow the appeals and set aside the interim judgment and order of the High Court", ruled the bench.

Asaram's son, Narayan Sai, was convicted and sentenced to life term in a 2014 rape case.