A sessions court while granting bail recently to two children in conflict with law accused in Vakola musician Bennett Rebello murder case, considered the probation officer’s report which said they had a good conduct in the observation home.
The musician who had informally adopted the girl, had been allegedly murdered by the girl and her minor boyfriend. A friend of the boy, an adult, had helped them dispose of the body. The body that had been thrown into water bodies had been found in suitcases across locations in the city.
The girl, who was found to be a minor after her arrest in 2019, is now 19. The court said in its order, “Perused the report of the Probation Officer. It appears from the said report that the applicant is observed to be a curious girl with good conduct.” It noted further that she has a passion for learning and while in the observation home, she is also an active participant in all activities as well as vocational courses such as computer and mehendi classes. She was found interested in building her knowledge, it noted.
It said that an NGO Prayas has been working with the minor and is ready to take her education and rehabilitation responsibilities. Her mother is ready to take her custody too, Additional Sessions Judge Kalpana K. Patil noted in her order.
For the boy who is now 18, the court noted that while in the observation home, he kept himself occupied in reading books as per the Probation Officer’s report. Further, that another NGO was willing to take his rehabilitation responsibility and that his father was prepared to take his custody.
Arguing for their bail, their advocate had told the court that as per the Juvenile Justice Act, children in conflict with law are entitled to be released on bail regardless of the offence committed. Only if releasing them on bail could cause them harm, it could be denied in exceptional circumstances. For both, it was argued that they have passed Class 10 and wish to continue their education.