News Brief

Bombay High Court Orders Release of Juvenile In Pune Porsche Crash Case, Emphasises Treating Minor Separately

Swarajya Staff

Jun 25, 2024, 08:08 PM | Updated 08:08 PM IST

Bombay High Court. (Source: Twitter)
Bombay High Court. (Source: Twitter)

On Tuesday (25 June), the Bombay High Court ordered the release of the minor involved in the Pune Porsche crash case, granting a habeas corpus plea that sought to quash remand orders sending him to an observation home.

The court has ruled that the custody order was illegal and beyond jurisdiction, directing that the minor be placed in the care of his paternal aunt.

The court emphasised adherence to the Juvenile Justice Act, treating the minor separately from adults despite the crime's severity.

The decision followed a 21 June hearing by Justices Bharati H Dangre and Manjusha A Deshpande, prompted by a plea from the minor’s aunt challenging the magistrate and Juvenile Justice Board's orders from 22 May and 4 June.

Pending the plea's resolution, the petitioner sought the minor’s temporary release from the observation home, calling his detention arbitrary. Senior advocate Aabad Ponda argued that the minor’s liberty was unjustly curtailed by his remand to the observation home post-bail.

The minor’s aunt, through Advocate Swapnil Ambure also argued that under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015, it is imperative to prevent minors from becoming hardened criminals. She claimed the minor should not have been taken from his grandfather's custody and placed in an observation home, as a 19 May order had initially granted his release on bail.

The court noted the police had not sought an appellate court’s intervention to cancel the Juvenile Justice Board's bail order. Instead, they amended the bail order, resulting in the minor’s confinement in the observation home.

Public prosecutor Hiten Venegaonkar defended the JJB's remand orders, urging the High Court not to intervene. He mentioned that blood samples of the minor accused had been tampered with, and actions were taken against those responsible to send a strong societal message.

The accident occurred on 19 May, when the juvenile, allegedly intoxicated, crashed the Porsche, resulting in the deaths of two software engineers.

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