The Ernakulam District and Principal Sessions Court on Wednesday granted anticipatory bail to three officials of the Aluva Municipality against whom the Aluva Judicial First Class Magistrate had ordered to register case for the suicide of Arumughan, an employee of the municipality. There were allegations that Arumughan had committed suicide as the municipality failed to give him salary on time.
The bail was granted to Aluva Municipality secretary Anuja, Municipal chairman T Jacob and B Rajan. The accused was granted bail on executing a bond with two sureties for Rs 25,000. The court also directed them not to leave Ernakulam district for a period of one month and to be available for interrogation as and when summoned.
The Sessions Court also asked the Magistrate court to be cautious and careful while taking a decision to refer such complaints over the suicide of a person for investigation. “In this case, the complaint was mechanically forwarded by the Magistrate. In a case alleging abetment of suicide, the complaint must contain something definite to show that the accused were responsible for the commission of suicide or the accused had done something with evil intention and full knowledge which drove the accused to commit suicide. The delay in payment of wages is usual in local bodies and government institutions. If employees commit suicide due to delay in payment of salary, many officers in the state will have to be prosecuted,” the court observed.
The court said that police have not been able to say that the three persons are the real accused or that they had done anything to abet commission of suicide by Arumughan. “The court doesn’t find the necessity of judicial custody or custodial interrogation of the accused in the circumstances. The court does not think that the accused will not co-operate with the investigation or abscond from legal process. So they can be granted bail,” the court said.