Q. What is meant by “bail”?
Ans.: There is no definition of ‘bail’ in Code of Criminal Procedure, although offences are classified as bailable and non-bailable.
The dictionary meaning of word “bail” is to set free or liberate a person on security being given for his appearance.
The law lexicon defines the ‘bail’ as a security for the appearance of prisoner on giving which the accused is released pending trial or investigation.
In Wharton’s law lexicon the word “bail” has been defined as ‘to set at liberty a person arrested or imprisoned, on security being taken for his appearance”.
According to Black’s Law Dictionary 177 (4th ed.) what is contemplated by bail is “to procure the release of a person from legal custody, by undertaking that he/she shall appear at the time and place designated and submit him/herself to the jurisdiction and judgment of the court.”
Bail, in law, means procurement of release from prison of a person awaiting trial or an appeal, by the deposit of security to ensure his submission at the required time to legal authority. The monetary value of the security, known also as the bail or more accurately, the bail bond, is set by the court having jurisdiction over the prisoner. The security may be cash, the papers giving title to property, or the bond of private persons of means or of a professional bonding company. Failure of the person released on bail to surrender himself at the appointed time results in forfeiture of the security.
Thus, the “bail” means release of a person from custody or prison and delivery into the hand of sureties who undertakes to produce him in Court upon an appointed date.