MADURAI: Coronavirus seldom reveals its “smiling face”. The Madurai Bench of Madras High Court saw the pleasant side of the virus when two youth, accused of lifting bikes, were granted relief on Friday.
Citing unemployment problems faced by the youth during the pandemic-induced lockdown, Justice SM Subramaniam observed that the COVID-19 pandemic is an unfortunate situation and that a large number of young men and women lost their jobs.
“The petitioners were also out of business due to the crisis. Probably, this might have forced them to commit the crime. At the same time, this could be established only during the course of the trial,” he said, adding that unemployment and the prevailing circumstances in the society are the two dominating factors that needed to be considered while granting bail to the accused in such cases.
The judge also pointed out that detention is a preferable concept and that only under extraordinary and exceptional circumstances, should individuals be detained for a longer period. “Keeping the petitioners under detention for a longer period will further corrupt their mind and they will be tempted to commit more crime,” the judge added.
According to sources, the two youth – Deepak, a waiter at a hotel, and Naveen, an autorickshaw driver – were arrested on September 16 on charges of stealing five two-wheelers in August and September. However, the duo denied the charges in the court and said that they had been unemployed for a while and were roaming around in search of a job when the police “foisted” the case on them.